Weeks ago we published a strawberry risotto recipe. That risotto was inspired by one of my favorite restaurants in Cagliari: Da Cesare at the Caesar’s Hotel. We also published a mouth-watering saffron risotto recipe and many more will be here in the future.
Today, I would like to share another recipe that is a classic in the Italian cuisine: red wine risotto. However, to give an extra boost in taste and flavor, we will also prepare a thick cream of pecorino cheese that will be served over the rice: pretty spectacular effect for your guests!
Sardinia, blue zones and red wine
You may have heard about it. There are some places in the world called Blue Zones. Basically, blue zones are areas whose residents have a higher (compared to the average) life span. Sardinia, our beautiful region, is one of the most famous blue zones, and there are several studies that credit this longevity to Sardinian lifestyle: physical activity, local food and wine.
Cannonau, which has two to three times the level of artery-scrubbing flavonoids as other wines, may help explain the lower levels of stress among men. Plus, the low numbers of heart disease and cancer seems to be linked to the healthy effects of this wine.
Risotto with red wine and pecorino cream
I am a big fan of risotto, and like the slow process of cooking and taking care of it. It is kind of relaxing, and all the effort it’s worth at the end.
I love to use products from my region every time I can, therefore for this recipe we will be using a Sardinian Cannonau – a typical grape variety pretty common in our area – and a pecorino cheese.
I would recommend to cook the risotto first, and toward the end the cheese cream, as it is always better to serve it as soon as it is ready.
Ingredients for the risotto (serves 2)
- Rice, 180gr. (I used Carnaroli rice)
- Red wine, 2 cups (2 glasses)
- Onion, 1 small
- Extravirgin olive oil, 2 tbsp
- Vegetable stock, 3 to 4 cups, depending on the cooking time of the rice.
Ingredients for the pecorino cheese cream
- Pecorino cheese, grated, 3 tbsp
- Milk, 1 coffee cup
- Flour, 1 tbsp
- Butter, a knob
We start cooking the risotto as usual: sauté the chopped onion with a bit of extra-virgin olive oil, then toast the rice for a minute or two. At this point we can add the first glass of red wine. When it’s absorbed, add the second glass of wine and complete the cooking with your stock, until your risotto it’s perfectly al dente.
Remember: don’t make your risotto too dry, it must be creamy!
In order to make the delicious pecorino cream we can also have a look at one of our previous recipes. We just need to make it thicker, therefore we will use more grated cheese.
We start melting the butter, then the table spoon of flour and then the milk. After that, we can turn off the heating and add the pecorino cheese, stirring slowly but non-stop.
Once the cream is ready, just serve it over your risotto using a spoon. The dark color of your rice and the white color of your cheese cream will have a great impact on your guests. Plus, they can mix cream and rice together (as I love) or eat them separately as they prefer!
Risotto with red wine and pecorino
- Prep time: 20 minutes to cook the risotto; 7-8 minutes for the pecorino cream
- Yield: serves 2
- Tips: do not prepare the pecorino cream too much in advance because it will lose its texture