Sep 2006

Lemon Risotto with Spinach


  • 6 cups canned low-salt chicken broth
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 large shallots, chopped
  • 2 cups arborio rice or medium-grain white rice
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese (about 3 ounces)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 4 teaspoons grated lemon peel

Bring broth to simmer in large saucepan over medium heat. Reduce heat to low; cover to keep warm. Melt 1 1/2 tablespoons butter with oil in heavy large saucepan over medium heat. Add shallots and sauté until tender, about 6 minutes. Add rice; stir 1 minute. Add wine and stir until evaporated, about 30 seconds. Add 1 1/2 cups hot broth; simmer until absorbed, stirring frequently. Add remaining broth 1/2 cup at a time, allowing broth to be absorbed before adding more and stirring frequently until rice is creamy and tender, about 35 minutes. Stir in cheese and remaining 2 tablespoons butter. Stir in parsley, lemon juice, and lemon peel. Season risotto with salt and pepper. Transfer to bowl and serve.

Makes 6 first-course or 4 main-course servings.

Bon Appétit, May 2002

Substitutions: I pretty much stick to the recipe with this one, but try to use as little butter as possible. Leaving out the butter is not detrimental to the risotto’s instrinsic creaminess. Trust me. I also like to add in fresh spinach toward the end of the cooking period because spinach is awesome. i have also substituted onions for shallots on a number of occasions.

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3 thoughts on “Lemon Risotto with Spinach

  1. You have to be somewhat of a Luddite to stand around for 35 boring minutes stirring in broth to make risotto. Read anyone of the Lorna Sass books on pressure cookery and learn how to make a perfect, creamy, full flavored risotto in six minutes flat.

  2. I disagree with Stanley. I’ve read Lorna Sass recipe on her pressure cooking method with risotto, you left out the 2 min for cooking the onions. A perfect risotto needs gradual cooking and the right rice. The starch in the rice is brought out by the constant agitation and stirring. That’s what makes the dish creamy, luscious and true to its flavour.

    there is no shortcut to a risotto.

  3. I use a short cut – it’s called a lid. Simmer rice/broth/wine covered, adding more liquid as necessary. Kernals cook more consistently that way.

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