Radicchio and Prosciutto Risotto
More risotto experimentation, and this one was a winner. The bitterness of the radicchio and the saltiness of the prosciutto are a perfect complement. I also learned another important piece of the risotto puzzle: Using a too-large skillet causes the stock to evaporate too quickly, thereby not cooking the rice exactly to its peak of creamy perfection. Dang! At least now I know. The big skillet is for risotto for six, the smaller skillet is for risotto for my household.
I stole the radicchio prosciutto idea from the Williams-Sonoma New Healthy Kitchens cookbook, which was apparently the cookbook of the week. Their risotto method is a bit different from my own (it involves no wine, and adulterating the stock with water…bleh), so I didn’t follow that part at all. I just used my basic risotto method, which has been recounted at least a few times here, and can be found otherwise in about a bazillion places. A few helpful hints:
Don’t set the heat too low. The rice should bubble and pop a bit. Add only about 1/3 of a cup of stock at a time. I have a small ladle that works perfectly. Find a skillet that’s the right size for your risotto, so there’s not too much surface area–you want the pan to be full. Deglaze with a wine that’s not too fruity or vibrant, or its flavor will overpower the risotto a bit.
This “recipe,” then, will be pretty brief. Before you start the risotto, cut a small head of radicchio into quarters, drizzle with a little olive oil and salt and pepper, and broil it, for about six minutes, turning the pieces halfway through. Once it’s cooled a bit, slice it into strips. Slice about 2 ounces of prosciutto into thin strips, too.
When the risotto is finished, right after you all the parmesan and a little extra butter (if you do that), stir in the radicchio and prosciutto, and heat it for just another minute or two. It looks so lovely, with the two reddish colors against the creamy risotto. And it tastes most awesome. And supposedly it’s healthy or something, because it was from my healthy cooking cookbook. Ha.