Risotto with barolo and castelmagno cheese

A red-hued risotto with a lightly veined hard cheese from Giorgio Locattelli
By Giorgio Locatelli
Risotto with barolo and castelmagno cheese
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Effort: medium


  • 2.5 litres chicken stock
  • 50 g cold diced butter
  • 1 onion, chopped very finely
  • 400 g Vialone Nano rice
  • 200 ml Barolo red wine
  • 200 g Castelmagno cheese


1. Bring the stock to the boil in a saucepan and turn down the heat so it's only just simmering.

2. Melt half the butter in a heavy-based pan and add the chopped onion. Cook gently for about 5 minutes, until softened but not coloured.

3. Add the rice and stir around to coat in the butter and 'toast'. Make sure all the grains are warm before adding the Barolo. Let the wine evaporate completely until the onions and rice are dry.

4. Add the stock, a ladleful or 2 at a time, stirring and scraping the rice in the pan as you go. When each addition of stock has almost evaporated, add the next ladleful. If the colour of the risotto isn't as intensely pinky-red as you would like, add a little more wine.

5. Carry on cooking for around 15-17 minutes, adding stock continuously as above. After about 12-14 minutes, slow the addition of stock, so that the rice doesn't become too wet and soupy at this stage, as when you add the butter and castelmagno at the end, it will become too sloppy. The risotto is ready when the grains are soft, but still al dente.

6. Turn down the heat and allow the risotto to rest for a minute. Using a wooden spoon, vigorously beat in the remaining cold diced butter and finally the castelmagno, making sure you shake the pan energetically at the same time as you beat. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Divide the risotto between 4 bowls.

7. To serve, warm 4 spoon heads in a saucepan of boiling water, fill each spoon with little Barolo and rest on top of each plate of risotto, so each person can pour the warm wine over the dish to taste.

8. Alternatively, make a little well in each plate of risotto, then at the table, pour in the wine and grate some more castelmagno over the top.

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