Friday, March 01, 2013

risotto ai mirtilli {blueberry risotto}




March 1st.  Didn't we just celebrate the new year yesterday?!  The month isn't exactly coming in like a lion, but it's a cool, cloudy, dreary day, nonetheless.  The weather report this morning was calling for a "possible" snow storm next week.  We haven't had any measurable snow all winter here in Northern Virginia, so wouldn't it be typical to get our first storm when spring is preparing to show itself!  Last year, the same scenario took place.  My early spring, bright yellow forsythia shrubs, blanketed in a gorgeous pure white, bowing over from the snow's weight...were the prettiest sight ever!

It's days like today, that lend their way to a lovely, savory dish. Risotto ai mirtilli fits the part perfectly.  With our grocery stores beginning to bloom with fresh, farmer's market like bins of fruits and vegetables, what better way then to have a comforting, creamy dish of risotto - filled with lovely, plump blueberries, bursting with nutrients and flavor!  {side note:  another risotto filled with some of those vibrant green spring veggies is coming soon as well!}






Before launching my blog last July, I was in the planning stages for several months beforehand.  While searching for new and unique creations, I came across this divine recipe that fit my blog's concept of "sweet and savory creations, inspired by lovely, fresh ingredients."  It was from my Italian blogging friend Barbara, of cucina di Barbara.  The recipe is quite simple, with very few ingredients.  Coming together from the delightful flavors and textures of parmigiano-reggiano and montasio, a crisp, fruity, dry white wine, and the sweet/tart flavor of the blueberries - is all this delicious dish takes.  Excellent when fresh blueberries are starting to hit markets from now through summer, makes it a two season favorite of mine.  When the blueberries begin to burst in the final stage of cooking, changing the pale white risotto to flecks of violet-blue color, it creates the most beautiful, enjoyable plate!

Until next time...and a scrumptious, caramel loaf cake...mangia!  xox

Carol






Risotto ai Mirtilli {Blueberry Risotto}
Servings:  4 as a main meal or 8 as a side

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups arborio rice
4 - 5 cups vegetable stock
1 large onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (2 for cooking, 1 reserved to add at the end)
1/2 cup white wine (I've used Pinot Grigio and Chardonnay, and prefer Chardonnay)
4 tablespoons freshly grated parmigiano-reggiano, plus extra for garnish
1/3 cup freshly grated montasio cheese
1 cup fresh blueberries, plus 1 cup extra for garnishing
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Create the Risotto ai Mirtilli {Blueberrry Risotto}

In a large saute pan, heat 2 tablespoons of evoo over medium heat, add in the chopped onion and garlic until tender, approximately 3 minutes.  Add the rice and stir together with the oil, onions, and garlic until it become glossy, about 1 minute.  Once glossy, stir in the white wine, stirring constantly, until it is absorbed.  Add the vegetable stock, 1 ladle at a time, waiting for the stock to be absorbed before adding the next ladle, stirring continuously.

When the risotto is nearly done, and you are adding your last ladle of stock, add the 1 cup of blueberries at the same time.  When the last ladle of stock is absorbed, the risotto creamy, and some of the blueberries have begun to burst, stir in the remaining 1 tablespoon of evoo, the parmigiano-reggiano, and montasio and remove from heat.

Serve hot, garnished with extra blueberries and a sprinkling of parmigiano-reggiano.  Mangia!!!

Recipe adapted from cucina di Barbara.

46 comments:

  1. I love the addition of blueberries! I have only made savory risottos, but I am really intrigued by fruit in them!

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    1. You will have to give it a try, Elizabeth...it's so good!

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  2. Holy cow, that looks really delish! Such an inventive recipe, love the creativity here!!

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    1. Thanks so much, Jocelyn! It is delish! :) Have a great weekend!!!

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  3. What a unique risotto! I bet the pops of sweetness from the blueberries must be a wonderful addition. I can't wait till the farmers' market opens around here...but first the snow needs to stop :)

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    1. It's very unique. I was intrigued when I first came across it. Loving blueberries, I just had to try it, and have now made it a few times! We may be getting snow next week...but it already is like spring in the supermarkets...clearing out the winter fruits and bringing in the spring!

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  4. Wow this is so creative!! I never would have thought of this! I will have to try this!

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  5. What a gorgeous risotto, I'll have to try it out once the blueberries are ripe at the nearby blueberry farm :).

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    1. Thanks Laura, definitely give it a try!! Happy Saturday!

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  6. savory and sweet is my favorite. :) too bad here in barletta blueberries don't exist (it's the trouble of being in very tropical puglia) but once i'm back in new england this summer i'm totally trying this! :)

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    1. One of my favorites too, Marissa! To be honest, I would trade time in Barletta for blueberries! ;) Give it a try this summer, I think you will really like it! Perfect for New England! Have a great weekend!

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  7. Very unique and gorgeous color Carol! Adding blueberries is so creative, a slightly sweet surprise. I don´t think I planned my blog, except maybe the first post if that.

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    1. Thanks so much, Paula! It's a wonderful combo of flavors! I'm kinda weird when it comes to planning...have to have everything ready, and understand how everything works (blog wise), before I can dive in! I have a number of recipes now ready to go, just have to write them up, but always have writer's block! lol Have a great weekend!

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  8. So, my husband thought I was a bit "woohoo" when I made chocolate risotto... let's see what he thinks when I make your delicious risotto version!! :-D I absolutely love this!!

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    1. He won't think you're crazy once he tastes it, Kate! lol Thanks so much for your kind comment!!!

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  9. From the pictures on FB, I thought it was going to be sweet, but how interesting, it's savoury! I am sure the blueberries lend themselves quite well in savoury preparations such as this. Love the gorgeous colours too Carol. I have to say, I was well impressed when you mentioned you planned things before you started blogging....I just wrote a post and pressed "publish"! Maybe some planning would've helped me!!

    Nazneen

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    1. Hi Nazneen! Happy Saturday! Thank you so much for your sweet comment! Sometimes all my planning comes from being a perfectionist, which isn't the greatest trait! It can cause me to take forever to choose which photos to use, etc. Sometimes it's ok. :) Have a great weekend, Nazneen!

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  10. I feel the coming of spring)))

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    1. You and me both, Elen! Thanks for visiting today!

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  11. What a unique risotto! I would have never though of adding berries but I made the flavour is delicious.

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    1. Thank you, Natalie! It really is unique, and delicious!!!

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  12. I love anything with blueberries. They are my favorites and they are good for you, too. Remember my blueberry muffins? I have an even better recipe now.

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    1. Hey Mom! Happy Sunday! Yes, they are very good for you. Another news report this morning on their benefits. You'll have to email me your new muffin recipe...I'll give it a try!! xox

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  13. Hi Carol,
    just discovered your blog. Congrats on this beautiful and creative recipe.
    Love the combination of flavors!
    http://ambassadorstable.blogspot.com/

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    1. So happy you found me, Daniela!! Thank you for your kind words!!!

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  14. Hi Carol! Haha, I thought exactly the same! I felt like we just started a new year, but already 2 months have passed?! I cannot believe it... This is my very first time seeing risotto with fruits in it. I love both blueberries and risotto but never actually thought of combining these two! It's always fun to learn something new. Thanks for sharing the recipe with us!

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    1. Good morning, Nami! Thank you so much for visiting my blog, and leaving your thoughtful comment! Time just passes too fast, doesn't it? If you have ever eaten blueberries in your oatmeal, you can have an idea of how wonderful this risotto is! Enjoy your week!!!

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  15. You know I am really stuck still somewhere last November. This year will catch up w/me when the kids are out this summer:))Love this gorgeous risotto...so fresh and fun!

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    1. Hi Lora! November...I can believe it...you've been through so much lately. I love how you described the risotto...fresh and fun! That's a perfect description! Thanks for your sweet comment!

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  16. I was just saying to myself yesterday, "It's March already?" Time flies, definitely.

    I have never had risotto with blueberries before but being they're one of my favorite fruits, I can't wait to try this. So, so pretty!

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    1. Happy Monday, Jean! It does fly...way too fast! Thank you for the kind words on the risotto!! If you like blueberries, I'm sure you'll enjoy it!

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  17. I really thought this was going to be more along the lines of risotto pudding sort of dessert, so I was stunned to see it as a savory dish. Such an interesting idea! Blueberries are certainly scarce around here in Naples...I don't think they're grown locally, and if they're imported the cost feels like somewhere around $1 a blueberry. Seriously. As a blueberry lover, you can imagine how this pains me! When I get home at the end of this year (YAY!) I am putting this on my list of must tries.

    Hope you had a wonderful weekend :)

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    1. Good morning, Tracy, or I should say good afternoon to you in Italy! So jealous!!! ;} Thank you for stopping by, I always love your sweet comments!!! Definitely give this a try when you get back home! Have a beautiful day!!!

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    1. Thank you for that sweet comment, Jen! Much appreciated!!! Ready for our snow starting tonight?? :}

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  19. This looks like the best-thing-ever! Can't wait to see blueberries at the market!

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    1. Thank you so much, Ashley!! It's really delicious! Thanks for stopping by!

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  20. I'm loving the idea of risotto with blueberries-being a huge fan of blueberries, I try to put them in everything when they start to appear at the markets at a lower price during the Summer ;-) Thanks for sharing your unique creation ;-)

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    1. Thanks, Patty! I love blueberries, too...and adore them in savory dishes. Have them in my morning oatmeal all the time!

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  21. At first I thought that it was a sweet risotto but it's a savoury one which makes it really intriguing. I'd love to make this one day :)

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    1. Good morning, Lorraine! It's very intriguing...hope you have a chance to try it! Nothing like cooking with fruit...btw, I'm in love with your strawberry layered cake!!!

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  22. I've heard of strawberry risotto, lemon risotto, even grape risotto! But why not blueberry risotto, right? Very interesting...!

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    1. Right, Jen! ;} I actually never heard of strawberry...now I want that! Thanks for stopping by, Jen...happy Friday!!!

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  23. What a gorgeous risotto! I am so intrigued by the addition of blueberries - it must be fantastic! Can't wait to say hello to more berries & so long to all this snow! Have a great weekend, Carol!

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    1. Hi Meghan! Thanks so much for your kind words!!! It is fantastic, thank you! We got snow here on Wednesday, but it's almost gone today. It was our only snow this winter, about 4 or 5 inches. Happy to see it, but now glad it's gone! ;} Hope yours will soon be gone, too. You have a great weekend too, Meghan!!!

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Hi! Thank you so much for stopping by a cup of mascarpone, and taking the time to leave a comment! I read, smile, and cherish each and every one of them! xox

Carol