Sausage, radicchio and barolo wine risotto

Spicy Italian sausage, bitter-leafed radicchio and a robust Italian red wine make excellent partners in this substantial risotto from Diana Henry
By Diana Henry
Sausage, radicchio and barolo wine risotto
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Effort: medium

Ingredients

Tips and Suggestions

Italian sausages, consisting of 100% meat and seasoned with pepper, fennel and chilli, are full of flavour and worth trying fresh. The taste is usually quite strong. Traditional Italian sausages, zampone and cotechino, both of which are large cured sausages weighing up to 1kg, are boiled and served in large slices. They can be obtained from a few sausage specialists, delis (who sell them vacuum packed) and the Italian site Esperya.

Barolo wine, a robust, dry and full-bodied red wine, is produced from the Nebbiolo grape in the Piedmont region of Italy.

Method

1. Cut the sausage into chunks, about the size of a walnut, then roll them slightly so that they are the shape of little balls.

2. Heat the olive oil in a heavy-based pan, add the sausage and fry until it is well browned on the outside.

3. Add the onion and cook until the onion begins to soften. Add the garlic and cook for another minute, then add the rice, stirring until it is completely coated in the juices.

4. Pour in the hot wine, a little at a time, stirring continuously and only adding more wine when the previous amount has been absorbed. Now add the hot stock, a ladleful at a time, stirring continuously. It will take about 25 minutes to stir in all the liquid.

5. About 10 minutes before the end of the cooking time, stir in the radicchio until it wilts.

6. Taste for seasoning (both the wine and reduced stock are salty) and add salt if necessary. Season with freshly ground pepper too. Stir in the butter and the cheese and serve, passing extra cheese separately.

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