Risotto is all about deglazing. Warm stock/broth is added – one ladleful at a time – to simmering Arborio rice until each chubby grain softens into creamy bliss. Arborio rice has a higher starch content than regular rice. The starch combines with the stock/broth to give risotto its characteristic creaminess.
To make a basic risotto, heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a heavy pot over medium heat. Add a cup of Arborio rice and stir until evenly coated. Stir in a splash of white wine and once it’s absorbed, repeat with a ladleful of stock. Continue stirring in ladles of stock, one at a time, until the rice is al dente. Never add more stock until the previous ladleful has been absorbed. Stir in freshly-grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, season to taste with salt and pepper and serve immediately.
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