Let's Cook with Meg and Ted

Risotto con Finocchi - Risotto with Fennel

4-5 medium fennel bulbs
3 tablespoons of butter
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 small onion, peeled and finely chopped
1 stalk of celery, finely chopped
350 g arborio rice
2 litres of vegetable stock
salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 tablespoons freshly grated parmesan cheese

Rinse the fennel bulbs and remove the outer leaf. Cut the bulbs vertically into slices about 5mm thick. Each segment should be held together at the bottom by the base of the bulb. Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a large heavy-bottomed saucepan together with the oil. Add the onion, celery and fennel and saute for 5-7 minutes, stirring.

Add the rice and cook for 1 minute over medium heat; then begin adding the stock, a little at a time, stirring continually, until the rice is cooked. It should take about 15-18 minutes. The risotto should be creamy but not too liquid.

Finally, add the remaining butter and the parmesan and mix well. Season with salt and pepper and serve hot.

Serves 4.

Recipe from Zuppe Risotto Polenta by Mariapaola Dettore.

February 2001

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