This is a pretty basic risotto, far less rich than I’d normally eat myself, but Bert loves it and I’ll eat it too if it’s just the two of us rather than cook twice. The main point of including it here is that it makes a great basis for Finger Arancini, which I’m planning to make tomorrow.
Serves 1.5 with leftovers for Arancini
Glug olive oil and small knob butter
1 small onion, chopped
Large clove garlic, crushed
About 200g risotto rice (a bit over a third of one of those little bags)
1/2 tin tomatoes
1 teaspoon dried oregano or finely chopped fresh oregano
About 500ml water from a hot kettle – measure the tomatoes into a jug and make it up to 750ml
Low salt stock cube
2 handfuls grated parmesan or pecorino (my mum recently made this with pecorino, and larger handfuls than I’d probably have put in – I’m now realising that a handful is a rather vague term – and it had lovely pockets of mild, soft cheese in it. I’d always do it that way now.)
A little pepper
Fry the onion and garlic in the olive oil and butter then stir the rice through to coat it. Add the herbs then the liquid (with the crumbled stock cube stirred in), bit by bit till it’s absorbed. This takes a while – you may have to hold your baby while you do it – but Bert seems to enjoy watching me cook and it’s easy enough to stir with one hand and hold a baby in the other arm. He also loves running his fingers through the raw rice. I’m hoping he’ll have lovely memories of cooking with me, but who knows, he might just have the level of awareness of a high functioning ape at the moment. Anyway, when the liquid’s all absorbed and the rice is soft, season and stir through the cheese. It may take more or less liquid so you’ll need to keep tasting it. I did feel like I needed to add a bit of salt for myself with this one.