Mussel and saffron risotto

all details

The single most important thing to remember when making a risotto is that it's all about restraint. Gently does it with the heat - a steady ticking over is all that is required. Use small ladlefuls of hot stock and go easy on the flavours - the extra ingredients are there to flavour the rice, not to poke out of the mound in lumpy competition. That goes too for the last-minute addition of the parmesan and butter.

Mussel and saffron risotto
Photo: Rebecca Hallas

Ingredients

  • 1 kg mussels, scrubbed and bearded
  • about 1/3 cup white wine
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, sliced
  • 25g butter
  • 450g risotto rice
  • 1/2 tsp saffron threads, soaked in a little warm water
  • 1/2 cup extra white wine
  • 1-1.2 litres light chicken or fish stock
  • 1 tbsp chopped parsley
  • 25g extra butter
  • 3 tbsp grated parmigiano

Method

Steam the mussels open with a little white wine in a pan covered with a tight-fitting lid. As they open, remove them to a bowl and reserve the liquor. Once cool, remove the mussels from the shells and set aside while the risotto cooks.

In a heavy-based pot, gently cook the onions and garlic in butter until very soft and pale golden.

Add the rice and stir until the grains are well coated. Now add the saffron threads and half-cup of wine and cook, stirring until the wine has almost completely bubbled down.

Add the liquor from the mussels and continue as described in the previous recipe, until the rice is almost finished.

Add the mussels just at the end to warm through.

To serve

Finish with the chopped parsley, butter and parmesan.

This recipes is featured in the book, Autumn is available now in all good bookstores RRP $34.95. To order direct call 1300 656 059 or visit www.smh.com.au/store 

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  • Cuisine - Italian
  • Course - Lunch

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