Monday, September 12

the risotto of your dreams {creamy chocolate risotto}

It's the Secret Recipe Club reveal day, and boy have we got a doozy for you! What's that you say?  You haven't heard of SRC?  Well,  here's the scoop: each month we're given a blog from one of the other members to choose a recipe from.  We simply make that item, putting our own spin on it if we like, and then share it with the world on reveal day.  The hard part is keeping it a secret until then!  We're havin' a ball - it's a delight to see the reactions of other members, as well as finding out who had your blog and what recipe they chose to make.  Click here to find out how you can join us!

I received Culinary Adventures with Camilla to choose a recipe from this month.  Camilla is one creative cook!  And it's definitely an adventure seeing what comes out of her kitchen each day as she whips up delicious foods from what she has on hand.  She also uses ingredients like chestnut flour, double chocolate stout, and bee pollen - sounds intriguing doesn't it?  Her fearless approach to baking is refreshing and inspiring - it encourages me to step out of my comfort zone and try new foods and combinations I hadn't thought of previously.

 I love all things chocolate and Italian, so her recipe for spiced chocolate risotto immediately caught my eye. Yep, you heard me - chocolate risotto!  Think chocolatey rice pudding, but infinitely better. Camilla follows the rule of thumb she learned in Italy - use one handful of rice per person and an extra handful for the pot when making risotto.  So this recipe is more of a springboard you use as inspiration.  She infused her milk with raw sugar, cardamom, nutmeg and cinnamon; then added cocoa powder and some mascarpone cheese for her risotto.  I took a little different route, and created a version reminiscent of Nutella by adding a splash of Frangelico, dark chocolate, grated orange zest, and a little mascarpone cheese for an extra velvety texture.  A dollop of vanilla whipped cream tops it off, along with some toasted hazelnuts and cocoa nibs for a deliciously crunchy contrast.

You really need to treat your loved ones (and yourself) to this fabulous dessert - and trust me, risotto is not difficult to make, I promise!

Creamy Chocolate Risotto {the risotto of your dreams!}
adapted from Culinary Adventures with Camilla
about 4 servings

1 cup arborio rice
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 tablespoons Frangelico
3 1/2 cups whole milk
1/2 vanilla bean
4 tablespoons raw sugar
pinch of salt
1 tablespoon Dutch process cocoa
1/2 cup dark chocolate, finely chopped (about 3 oz.)  - a food processor works great for this
2 tablespoons mascarpone cheese
finely grated zest from 1 orange
cocoa nibs, for garnish
coarsely chopped toasted hazelnuts, for garnish
vanilla bean whipped cream

Split vanilla bean lengthwise, and scrape out seeds.  Add vanilla bean, seeds, milk, sugar, salt, and cocoa to a medium sauce pan over low heat.  Warm just until it begins to simmer, whisking occasionally to make sure everything is well blended.  Turn off the heat, cover, and let milk steep 10 minutes to infuse the vanilla flavor.  Remove the vanilla bean from the milk.

In a large saute pan or stockpot, melt butter over low heat, then add arborio rice and stir for two minutes until the rice is well coated with the butter.

Add the Frangelico and stir until it is absorbed.

Increase the heat to medium low.  Add 1/2 cup of hot milk, and stir frequently, until it is nearly absorbed.

Continue adding milk, a cup at a time, stirring frequently until it is almost absorbed before adding the next cup.  It should take about 20 minutes for the rice to become creamy and al dente (just a hint of a bite to it, but not chewy).

Remove the rice from the heat and stir in the mascarpone cheese, orange zest and chocolate.  Stir until the chocolate is melted.  Serve with cocoa nibs and chopped toasted hazelnuts, and a dollop of vanilla whipped cream if desired.

*to toast hazelnuts, place shelled nuts on a cookie sheet and bake in a 350 degree oven for about 5 minutes, until fragrant.  Remove from the oven and wrap the nuts up in a clean kitchen towel.  Rub the nuts together in the towel to remove the skins, let cool, then chop as desired.

*to make homemade vanilla whipped cream:  use wire whisk attachment on your mixer, add 1 cup organic heavy whipping cream and beat on medium speed a minute or so until it starts to thicken.  Add 1/4  teaspoon vanilla (I added a few vanilla bean seeds to mine as well), and 3 tablespoons granulated sugar and continue beating on high until stiff peaks form. Use immediately.

"Be not afraid."
"anything done for another is done for oneself."
"the future starts today, not tomorrow."
"the truth is not always the same as the majority decision."
"freedom consists not in doing what we like, but in having the right to do what we ought."      
~ Blessed Pope John Paul II


Melissa @IWasBornToCook said...

Very interesting! Looks delicious.

Camilla said...

Thank you for making such a great looking chocolate risotto from my blog...and for the very kind words about my culinary fearlessness. I hope everyone enjoyed it!
~Camilla, Culinary Adventures with Camilla

Desi said...

So pretty! And interesting too! I've never heard of a chocolate risotto. I bet it's better than all the others!

Jane Bonacci - The Heritage Cook said...

Outstanding choice for SRC! I love the concept and you're right, Camilla is always very creative!

Lisa~~ said...

What a fabulous and delicious way to make risotto, I never would have thought to make it into a dessert.

If you haven't already, I'd love for you to check out my SRC recipe this month: Welsh Cakes.

Cook Lisa Cook

Anne @ Quick and Easy Cheap and Healthy said...

That sounds amazing!

Trisha said...

My word! This looks great, this is the first sweet version of risotto I've come across!

Sara said...

Wow, this looks so yummy, like the fanciest rice pudding ever!! :)

Cooking Rookie said...

I was just eyeing a chocolota rice pudding from the Pierre Herne book for the last couple of days. This recipe sounds pretty similar. I am now even more encouraged to try it (despite all the calories :-) ). Great post!

Katherine Martinelli said...

A dessert risotto? Amazing!! I guess it is just like a rice pudding, but man does this look good!

Lisa said...

This looks SO decadent! I made a white chocolate risotto a while back, and loved it, so I can only imagine how creamy and wonderful this one tastes :) said...

Oh my gosh, your pictures of that lucious looking dessert are fabulous. I love the tea cup too.! I am now following you. Hope you will visit my site and follow me back.

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