Risotto Milanese

Risotto Milanese

This is a recipe I learned from my mum. She in turn learned it from her Italian Nonna (my great-grandma).

Risotto Milanese – the way my family makes it

During my studies, towards the end of most months (because wages arrived end of month and I usually ran out of money around mid-month), I very often made this risotto. Rice, dried funghi porcini, Parmesan cheese and safron were usually available at my home because they keep very long (the cheese of course in the freezer) and I usually buy in bulk. Now, whenever I eat at a catering event and the vegetarian dish is risotto, I am a little disappointed about the “poor people cuisine”… Very snobbish, I know.

(Just recently a friend pointed out that it was extremely ironic that I cooked a dish that contained the probably most expensive spice there is (safron) whenever I ran out of money…)

Anyway, here’s the recipe:

Ingredients for 4 people
20 g dried funghi porcini
1 Tbs olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1 clove of garlic, pressed
400 g risotto rice (Vialone, Arborio, St. Andrea)
4 dl white wine
1 l vegetable broth
Safron to taste
Parmesan cheese to taste
Butter (optional)
Salt, pepper

Soak the drie funghi in warm water for about 15 minutes. Heat the olive oil in a medium size pot, add onions and garlic and glaze. Add the rice and glaze that too. Add the wine and wait until it is completely avaporated. Add broth and let simmer half covered for about 18-20 minutes, until rice is al dente. Add safron and cheese (maybe butter) to taste. Season and serve while still hot.

Usually, in our family, nothing remains. However, I like to make a big batch (keep the intentionl leftovers well away from the hungry people…) and make rice burgers the next day, to take to the office for lunch. That recipe is for another post, though.


2 thoughts on “Risotto Milanese

  1. O this sounds good! Do you think pecorino romano could be substituted for the parmesan? I’ve been on the look out for a risotto recipe that doesn’t use a cow milk derived product aside from butter.


    • Hi Katie!
      Thanks! I checked with my Italian boyfriend just to be sure. We both think it’s perfectly possible to use pecorino. He says it is essentially the same, so parmesan can almost always be substituted with pecorino.
      I think sheep and goat butter exist, if you want to be totally cow milk free. I have never tried, so couldn’t tell you if they taste any different from cow butter, though.
      Have a nice day!


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