ingredients of the month  March 2009
   

Risotto with Gorgonzola and Fresh Pear Sauce

To celebrate the month of March, we have decided to make an [...]

To celebrate the month of March, we have decided to make an updated version of an Italian classic: risotto alla gorgonzola. Spring is just around the corner but until the temperatures begin to rise, we will take comfort in this creamy dish from northern Italy.

Gorgonzola is a blue cow’s milk cheese originally from the small town of Gorgonzola, located less than 15 miles northeast of Milan. For more information on this legendary Italian blue, be sure to check out Chef Matteo Carboni’s video presentation.

In this recipe, the spicy, piquant flavor of the gorgonzola is balanced by the sweetness of the fresh pear sauce. Follow the chef’s directions for making a perfectly rewarding risotto.
What a wonderful way to finish your day.

RISOTTO WITH GORGONZOLA AND FRESH PEAR SAUCE
Serves 4 to 6

INGREDIENTS
For the pear sauce:

- 3 pears, medium-sized
- ½ clove garlic
- 2 sprigs of marjoram
- 4 cups vegetable stock
- 2 tbsp of Academia Barilla 100% Italian Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the risotto:
- 8 oz Carnaroli or Vialone Nano rice
- ½ onion
- 6 cups vegetable stock
- 3 oz gorgonzola
- 1 oz butter
- 1 oz Academia Barilla Parmigiano Reggiano aged 18
- 2 tbsp of Academia Barilla 100% Italian Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- salt and freshly ground black pepper

PREPARATION
The Pear Sauce

Cut the pears into quarters. Peel and core them. Peel garlic clove and cut in half. Heat a tbsp or two of Academia Barilla 100% Italian Extra Virgin Olive Oil in a pot and add garlic, roughly chopped pears and marjoram. Stir and let cook for a few minutes. Then, season with salt and pepper. Add vegetable stock and cook until soft. When pears are done cooking, remove from heat and set aside.

The Risotto
Begin to prepare the risotto by chopping 1/2 onion. Add a couple tbsp Academia Barilla 100% Italian Extra Virgin Olive Oil to a pot. When the oil is hot, add finely chopped onion and a pinch of salt and stir. When onion is soft, add rice and another pinch of salt. Stir constantly so rice doesn’t stick and toasts uniformly. Once rice is toasted, start adding boiling stock, a ladleful at a time. When stock evaporates and rice becomes slightly dry, add more stock. Continue cooking in this way for 16 to 18 minutes, depending on the variety of rice.

Return your attention to the pears. Once cooked, add freshly ground black pepper to the pot and then blend into a smooth pear puree. Finish cooking the risotto. Remove from heat when risotto still has a little liquid. Add ½ of the gorgonzola and butter. Cover and let rest for a minute. Add remaining gorgonzola and Academia Barilla Parmigiano Reggiano aged 18 months. To serve, pour a ladleful of pear sauce into each bowl. Place 2 large spoonfuls of risotto on top of sauce. Finish with a sprig of marjoram and freshly ground black pepper.

This simple, seasonal dish is certain to keep you warm while you wait for spring. Thanks Chef Matteo for another great recipe to add to our collection.

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