Recipe: Red Wine Risotto
Summary: Jewel-red, deeply flavored and perfect with beef or roasted meats, Red Wine Risotto makes an elegant Christmas dinner.
- 2 cups (500 ml) robust red wine (I used Gallo Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon)
- 2 cups/500 ml vegetable stock, more if needed
- 4 tablespoons/60 g butter
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 2 celery stalks, finely chopped
- 1 cup/200 g risotto rice such as arborio
- Salt and pepper
- Grated parmesan cheese (for serving)
- Heat the wine and stock in separate pans (I heated them both in separate large measuring cups in the microwave, reheating as necessary during the process). Heat the butter in a large saucepan and sauté the onion and celery over medium heat with a little salt and pepper until translucent and very soft, 12-15 minutes. (I didn’t add salt because my stock was salted.) Stir in the rice and cook, stirring constantly, until it absorbs the butter and looks transparent, 2-3 minutes. 
- Add about half the wine and simmer, stirring, until the rice starts to dry, 2-3 minutes.
- Add a couple more ladlefuls of hot stock and continue simmering, stirring constantly. When the rice starts to dry again and needs more liquid, continue with more wine, then with more stock, alternating wine and stock until all are used. It’s important to stir the risotto constantly and add liquid often so the rice does not get dry.
- The rice is done when very tender with only the slightest bit of resistance when you bite into a grain. It should be very creamy from the starch that leaches from the grains and don’t hesitate to add more stock if needed. Total cooking time for the rice is 25-30 minutes. Serve it as soon as possible. 
- Serves 4-5.
“One Souffle at a Time: A Memoir of Food and France,” by Anne Willan (2013; St. Martin’s Press)
Anne Willan’s note:
“I like my risotto very fluid, the Venetians call it al onda, on the wave, and it should not be left to stand as it will become sticky. Red wine risotto, with or without a sprinkling of grated Parmesan cheese, is a great opener to a winter meal of braised beef or pork, and any leftover is perfect for arancini, small balls of rice reheated in a frying pan.” If you’d like to make this recipe into risotto balls, they might look like these, created by chef Denise Vivaldo for Willan’s recent book signing party I attended in Los Angeles:
Preparation time: 10 minute(s)
Cooking time: 40 minute(s)
Diet type: Vegetarian
Diet tags: Gluten free
Number of servings (yield): 4
Culinary tradition: Italian
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Disclosure: Compensation for this post was provided by Gallo Family Vineyards via Sunday Supper, LLC. The opinions expressed here are those of the author, and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Gallo Family Vineyards.
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This post was originally published Dec. 15, 2013 on Shockingly Delicious and has been refreshed and republished Dec. 5, 2018.