The key to a good risotto is to watch it like a hawk and keep adding stock until the rice is to your desired texture. Although this takes a little effort, it is a superb mid-week meal: rich and delicious, satisfying and filling. If you have any leftovers (we did), use them up the next day. (My wife forgot to take hers to work for lunch, so I ate it!)
10 cherry or baby plum tomatoes, sliced in half
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 tsp dried rosemary, ground to a powder
Pinch of salt
Pinch of freshly ground black pepper
2 shallots or ½ large onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 red chilli (optional), deseeded and finely chopped
250g Chorizo sausage, diced
2 chicken breasts, cut into small pieces
200g risotto rice
1 large glass of white wine
500ml fresh chicken stock
2-3 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese, finely grated
1. Pre-heat the oven to 180C/Gas 4. Line a baking dish with parchment then add the tomato halves, cut-side up. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar, sprinkle on the ground rosemary, salt and pepper. Roast in the oven for around 20 mins, until the tomatoes are on the verge of collapsing.
2. Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan. Gently cook the onions, garlic and chilli (if using) until soft, approx. 5 mins.
3. Add the diced chorizo and cook for a couple of mins.
4. Add the chopped chicken and cook until translucent, approx. 5 mins.
5. Add the risotto rice and stir until all the grains are coated with the oils released by the chorizo.
6. In a small saucepan, add the stock and wine and bring to a very low simmer.
7. With a ladle, gradually add the stock-wine combo to the risotto pan. Bring to the boil and continue to cook until all the liquid has absorbed. Add another ladle-ful and repeat the process. Keep doing this until the rice becomes your desired texture (mine is al dente – with a little bite) and all the liquid has been absorbed. If you need less or more liquid, adjust accordingly (add a little water if you run out of stock).
8. Remove the tomatoes from the oven and add to the risotto and stir through.
9. Add the Parmesan cheese (more or less, according to taste).