Simple Baked Risotto with Mozzarella

by Heather on November 8, 2011

‘Twas but a few years ago that my friend Emma taught me to make risotto and I felt like the fanciest person in the world.

And now?  Well, I still like making it – risotto is the definition of technique and artistry in cooking if you ask me – but on a normal day I just plain don’t have time to make it.  There’s a lot of stirring and sweating behind the stove and the fact that I’m making other things too.  And honestly I can’t drink wine while doing that right now which makes it kind of hard to justify making it at all right now.

 

How many of you think I’m an alcoholic now?  I promise I don’t need it to cook, but risotto is the thing that makes me want to have it!

 

Anyway, I now have a way to make risotto in the oven, without all the stirring and drama and it’s ready in less time than the real deal.  It’s cheesy, comforting, and kind of tastes a little like what heaven probably will.  Probably.

SIMPLE BAKED RISOTTO WITH MOZZARELLA

  • 4 oz. fresh mozzarella, cubed into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 3/4 cup Arborio rice
  • 1 3/4 cup vegetable or chicken stock (I used veggie this time around)
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • pinch of cayenne pepper (or if you’re a: rich or b: lucky, use saffron)

Preheat your oven to 350 and grease a small 1-quart baking dish.  In a pan melt the butter over medium heat, add the garlic and saute for 1 minute.  Add the rice and saute for 3-4 minutes until the edges start to look a little translucent.  Stir in the salt, pepper and cayenne.  Spread the rice on the bottom of the baking dish and cover with the stock.  Evenly spread the mozzarella cubes on the surface and bake for 25-30 minutes until all of the liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender.  Remove from oven and serve hot!

Sure, it may take the fanciness out but leaves the delicious in.  And isn’t that what we all really want anyway?  I thought so ;)

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