You only need a few fresh ingredients (Rach grabs them from her garden!) + some pantry staples to make this creamy tomato risotto.
- 6 cups stock, or stock and water combined
- 1 chunk of rind of Parmigiano-Reggiano
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 3 to 4 cloves garlic, chopped
- 4 tablespoons tomato paste or sundried tomato paste
- 1½ cups Arborio or carnaroli rice
- Salt and pepper
- About ¾ to 1 cup white wine
- 2 pints small grape or vine cherry tomatoes, halved, or 4 ripe vine tomatoes, chopped (3½ cups)
- 3 tablespoons butter, cut into chunks
- One handful small basil leaves, torn
- 1 to 1½ cups grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
Warm the stock or stock cut with water and rind in a saucepot over medium-low heat.
Heat a large round-bottomed pan over medium to medium-high heat. Add oil, 2 turns of the pan, add the onion and cook 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the garlic and tomato paste, stir a minute more, then add the Arborio or carnaroli and season the rice, onions and garlic with salt and pepper. Stir again for 1 minute, then add wine. From the first addition of liquids, the rice should take 18 minutes. Add ½ to ⅔ of the fresh tomatoes.
Add the stock in stages once the wine absorbs, a few ladles at a time. With each addition, stir the rice very vigorously to develop the starch. When the Arborio has cooked about 16 minutes, add butter, basil and grated cheese, stir 2 minutes, then remove from heat. Adjust seasonings and serve in shallow bowls topped with the remaining tomatoes.