Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Roquefort Risotto with Honey and Cacao Nibs

This was quite a particular risotto.  No alcohol (yay for Muslims), no stock - just water, and the onions aren't fried in oil, but rather simmered in milk.  So yes, it's interesting, but what's more interesting is this dinner party I catered for last night. 

Guys, start hiring me. This is my third time catering - 10 people, 4 courses and I had a blast.  Prior to this I had catered for a friends' anniversary dinner and their Valentine's Day dinner, and both occasions were lovely but last night was just fun.  With 10 people, surprisingly it was more casual and relaxed, because instead of having a couple's love and relationship at stake, it was just 10 people having a nice dinner.  Less pressure, more chit chat.
This was the second course.  Be careful, don't overdo it with the honey, and maybe choose a milder honey, you don't want it to overpower the dish.  Try it out with any blue cheese, but stronger ones like roquefort, or a spicy gorgonzola work best.  You can also top it off with some nuts, and maybe drizzle with balsamic syrup instead.  Or a dark chocolate sauce, you have to really make sure you balance the sweetness though.

Recipe adapted from Sale e Pepe
Serves 4
300g arborio rice
2 medium white onions
200ml milk
150g roquefort, broken up into small pieces
cacao nibs
olive oil

Coarsly chop the onions and boil them in milk until soft, about 30 minutes.  Blitz in a blender until smooth.

Boil 1.5L of water.

Put the rice and about 4 tbsp of olive oil in a large pot, turn the heat up to medium-high and stir for a couple of minutes until the rice is well-coated in olive oil.  Add the onion mixture and stir for an additional couple of minutes. 

Add a ladle full of water, and stir until it's all absorbed by the rice.  Continue this process, a ladle at a time, until the rice is cooked but still al dente (about 20 minutes, and you may not need all the water).

Remove from heat, stir in the cheese and lightly season with salt. 

Serve with a drizzle of honey (the slightest bit) and top with some cacao nibs. 

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