Thursday, September 29, 2011

Italian Sausage and Red Pepper Risotto

Every once in a while, a recipe comes along that you know may take a while to cook, but you still have to give it a try.  This is definitely one of those recipes! 

Up until a couple of months ago, I had never heard of risotto!  Some of you might be thinking, what?!?  I know....I know.....I can't believe it either!  It's like I live under a rock.  How have I gone my whole life oblivious to the fact that something so scrumptious existed!?!

Risotto may take a little while to cook, but believe me when I tell you that it's well worth your time and effort, and if you follow each step of the recipe; it's also very easy.  Therefore, my suggestion to you is to clear an evening, stay in, cook dinner, relax (maybe with some wine), and grab a good movie or book!

Italian Sausage and Red Pepper Risotto
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Serves: 4-6
5 cups chicken broth
2 tablespoons butter
8 oz. Italian sausage, casing removed (or you could use ground sausage)
¾ cup finely chopped onion
1 cup chopped red bell pepper
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1½ cups Arborio rice
¾ cup dry white wine
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 Tablespoon chopped Italian parsley

In a medium saucepan bring the chicken broth to a gentle simmer.  Cover and keep the broth warm over a low heat.

Now, in a large saucepan, over a medium heat, melt the butter.  Add in the sausage and sauté until golden brown in color, and cooked through.  Toss in the onion and red pepper and sauté until tender, about 5-8 minutes.  Season with salt and pepper.

Add the rice into the sausage and vegetable mixture and stir until the ingredients are well combined.  Pour in the wine and simmer until it has almost evaporated, about 1 minute.  Remember to stir.

Add in ½ a cup of the simmering broth and stir until it is almost completely absorbed, about 1-2 minutes.  Continue cooking the rice, making sure to continue to add the broth ½ a cup at a time until it almost completely absorbed, before adding more.  This process should take about 25-30 minutes and when completed the rice should be tender but still firm, and the mixture should appear creamy.

Add in the parmesan cheese and stir until melted.  Transfer the risotto to a serving bowl and garnish with parsley and a little more parmesan cheese.

Source: Adapted from Brown Eyed Baker


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