Risotto is like comfort food to me. It’s warm, soft, a little bit creamy, deliciously flavoured and once you’ve got a basic risotto recipe you really can work in any other flavours you like. I’ve created this risotto with two of my favourite vegetables, cauliflower and fennel, plus a gentle citrus twist from lemon thyme. Comfort food at its best.
Gluten free : Vegetarian
2 fennel bulbs, cut into eighths
1/2 head cauliflower, cut into florets
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 (150g) white onion, peeled and chopped
3 cloves garlic, sliced
1 1/2 cups arborio rice
4 -5 cups (1-1.25L) vegetable or chicken stock
2 teaspoons lemon thyme+
1/2 cup grated parmesan or pecorino cheese
sea salt and black pepper
Preheat oven to 200C and line a large baking tray with greaseproof paper.
Place fennel pieces and cauliflower florets on tray, toss with about 4 tablespoons of olive oil, season and cook in oven for 30 minutes.
While vegetables are cooking make the risotto by heating remaining olive oil in a large saucepan on medium heat.
Add onion and garlic and cook for 3-4 minutes, until translucent, then add arborio (risotto) rice and cook, stirring frequently, for a further 5-6 minutes.
Reduce heat to low and add stock one cup at a time to rice.
Allow the cup of stock to absorb before adding the next cup and stir frequently.
Once the last cup of stock is poured into the rice, add the cooked vegetables and lemon thyme and stir gently, leaving just a touch of liquid remaining in the risotto from the final cup of stock.
Stir through parmesan or pecorino cheese, season with sea salt and black pepper and serve.