This is my favourite thing to do with the leftovers from a roast chicken. We always buy large free range chooks so we get at least 2 meals out of them – it’s great economy, two meals but not twice the cost of the meat.
If I have the time, I’ll use the chicken carcass to make the stock – but stock from the grocery store will do just as well. If you’re really pushed, use cubes.
Chicken Risotto (serves 4 generously)
Ingredients You Need:
- 1 Medium Onion
- 1/2 Glass Good White Wine
- 400g Risotto Rice
- 2 pints Chicken or Vegetable Stock
- Leftovers from a big roast chicken (couple of good handfuls of meat picked off the carcass) sliced into bite-sized pieces
- 1/2 Small Bag Frozen Peas (~250g)
- Parmesan Block
- 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
- Salt & Pepper
Gear You’ll Need:
- 2 Large saucepans
- Large wooden spoon
How To Make It:
- Put all the stock into one of the pans, bring up to a simmer
- Finely chop the onion and sauté until softened in the olive oil in the other pan, you don’t want to colour it so keep the heat medium low
- Sling the rice in (into the pan with the onions) and give it a good stir, get every grain coated with the oil
- Get the heat up to medium and lob in the wine and stir, stir, stir until the wine has been absorbed
- Add the stock one ladle at a time, letting it absorb, until it’s all used – this will probably take around 15 minutes and you should end up with velvety looking rice not dissimilar to porridge
- Get the peas in and let them cook for 2-3 minutes
- Throw in the chicken and stir for a minute or two to bring it up to temperature
- Season with the parmesan, salt and pepper to taste
- Serve with additional parmesan shaved/grated over the top
- If you want to step it up a notch, swap the wine for 1/4 glass of Vermouth
- If you’re not a fan of peas, substitute! Anything green that will hold it’s form will work – asparagus, french beans, spinach (drop this in just before you serve) – fill your boots!
- The secret to great risotto is twofold: patience and violence. Be patient with the stock, one ladle at a time and let it absorb. Be violent with your stirring, stir like a demon, knock the starches out of the rice to get the rich gooey thing going on
- If you really want to pep it up, thinly (and I mean thinly!) slice a fennel bulb into the pan with the onions
If you’re on a budget or just want a mid-week quaff, a well chilled Pinot Grigio will not go wrong. If you’re entertaining or trying to impress with this rustic classic then look for a Gavi – I like Ascheri if you can hunt some down.