Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Zucchini Flower Risotto

Some delightfully delicate sauces have been made with zucchini blossoms and I've always savored them when available to order. Finding baby zucchini in the Alemany Farmer's Market inspired me to try this risotto. Next time I'll peruse recipes from Italian cookbooks for a cream sauce, but this time I decided to experiment. How can one go wrong with fresh vegetables?

2C yellow & green zucchini
15 small zucchini flowers
1 large yellow onion
1 1/2C arborio rice
1C dry white wine (chardonnay)
1 64oz can of chicken broth
1 1/2C grated grana padana or parmigiano
extra virgin olive oil
unsalted butter


After removing all the flowers, wash, thinly slice and coarsely chop the zucchini. Take the stamens from the flowers and toss, setting the blossoms aside. Finely dice the onion and saute in the olive oil until translucent, then add the zucchini and saute a few minutes more, adding more oil if necessary. Add the rice to the pot, sauteing until the rice looks opaque, now add the wine and continue cooking and stirring until the liquid is absorbed. Add the stock one cup at a time until it is absorbed, stirring all the while.
Chiffonade the blossoms and stir into the risotto before adding the last cup of chicken stock. After you have added the stock, stir until the stock is almost fully absorbed. It will look thickened and milky.

Add about 2T of the butter and stir until the risotto is cooked and all the liquid is absorbed, take off the burner and add the shredded cheese. Mix until nice and silky and then plate.

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