Radicchio is mostly known as a lettuce. To many it has a slightly bitter and peppery taste but when cooked into a risotto it becomes quite sweet. Try this Italian inspired classic: it is easy and delicious. Serves 4 to 6
2 cloves garlic, peeled
2 leeks, washed and green ends removed, base trimmed & discarded
1 large red radicchio, cut into wedges
200g parmesan cheese
2 tbs olive oil
1½ cups (270g) Arborio rice
2 rashers bacon, chopped
50ml white wine
1½ litres good chicken stock (half stock and water can also be used)
½ cup chopped fresh parsley
sea salt and coarsely ground fresh pepper
Attach the slicer shredder, fitted with the coarse slicing drum, to the stand mixer and place the bowl underneath.
Turn the mixer to speed 8, add the garlic and leeks to the hopper and slice. Follow with the radicchio. Set the bowl aside.
Change the drum to the fine shredding drum and place a clean bowl underneath. Turn mixer to speed 8 and finely grate the cheese. Set aside.
Place the stock (and water if used) in a medium large saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer gently.
Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large, heavy based frying pan. Cook the garlic, leek and bacon for 4 to 5 minutes or until soft: stirring regularly. Add the radicchio and cook for 3 minutes. Stir in the rice.
Cook the rice, stirring regularly, until it is warmed through and just translucent at the edges.
Stir in the wine and then add 1 ladle of hot stock to the pot and stir until all the stock is absorbed. Continue adding hot stock, 1 ladle at a time and stirring constantly until it is absorbed before adding the next ladle. Repeat this process until the risotto is creamy and the rice just tender; about 20 minutes.
Off the heat, stir in half of the grated cheese along with the parsley and season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately topped with the extra parmesan.
- Arborio rice is an Italian rice variety, ideal for risottos and widely available from supermarkets. Other risotto rices include Carnaroli and Vialone Nano, available from specialist stores.