Paradiso Fall Recipe Series- Fig and Chestnut Risotto

As Summer ends and we welcome Fall, we begin our Fall recipe series continues with a seasonal take on a true classic; Risotto. We are creating a fall inspired dish with an array of complimenting flavors; perfect for a unique lunch or seasonal entertaining.

The fall ingredients we are using are figs and chestnuts combined with parmesan cheese to create a fall inspired risotto.

4 cups imported arborio rice

1 lb cooked chestnuts

1/2 lb fresh or dried figs

1 shallot

5 tbs virgin olive oil

2 tbs unsalted butter

1 gl. vegetable or chicken broth

5 tbs grated parmesan cheese

To prepare the broth:

- bring the broth to boil and keep hot

To prepare the risotto:

  • finely chop shallot
  • braise until golden brown with virgin olive oil in risotto pan
  • add the rice to the shallot and virgin olive oil in the risotto pan
  • slowly add broth, keeping broth just covering the rice
  • as the rice absorbs the broth, slowly add more
  • repeat and continue until the rice has cooked for a total of 20 minutes

To prepare the chestnuts & figs

  • puree half of the chestnuts and figs

To incorpate the chestnuts & figs

  • after 10 minutes into the rice cooking stir in the pureed chestnuts and figs

To incorporate the parmesan, butter and remaining chestnuts

  • stir in the 3 tbs of parmesan, 1 tbs of butter and 1/2 of the remaining whole chestnuts while rice is still over the heat
  • the flavors are slowly released during 5 additional minutes of cooking

Remove from the heat and add remaining butter and parmesan cheese and chestnuts in what we call mantecare.

Mantecare: Italian word to describe the last process of making risotto to bind the butter and parmesan, done while rice is removed off of the heat to avoid breaking the butter and creating the creamy texture.

To finish the risotto:

- If using fresh figs decorate the risotto with remaining figs.

You have now created a classic Chef Angelo recipe using some of his favorite fall ingredients