Risotto alla Fragola is an Italian Strawberry Risotto perfect for using up any extra strawberries sitting in your fridge or from the garden. I generally use strawberries in sweet dishes, but this risotto is actually on the savory side. Half of the strawberries are added at the beginning to soften and add to the flavor of the stock, while the other half are added at the end for extra texture. Serve as a first course or for a light lunch.
If you don’t have chicken stock, you can also use vegetable stock or water. The water just won’t add to the flavor.
I used Arborio rice, because it was the only risotto rice available at my supermarket. If you are able to find Carnaroli rice, it would also work well.
Risotto alla Fragole (Italian Strawberry Risotto)
Adapted from Twelve: A Tuscan Cookbook
6 cups chicken stock
2 1/4 ounces (60 grams) unsalted butter, divided
1 medium French shallot, peeled and finely chopped
9 ounces (250 grams) strawberries, hulled and halved, divided
3 tablespoons brandy
18 ounces (500 grams) risotto rice (Carnaroli or Arborio)
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup (50 grams) freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus additional for serving
In a medium pot, heat the stock and bring it to a light simmer.
In a large saucepan, melt half the butter over medium low heat. Add the shallot and cook until softened. Stir in half of the strawberry halves and cook for another 2 minutes. Pour in the brandy and continue to cook until evaporated. Add the rice and stir to thoroughly coat. Season as desired with salt and pepper.
Add the simmering stock, 1/2 cup at a time, and stir continuously until the liquid has been absorbed before adding more stock. Continue adding stock and stirring until the rice is creamy and soft, but with a slightly firm bite, about 20 minutes.
Stir in the remaining strawberries and butter, then the Parmesan cheese.
Serve immediately with additional Parmesan cheese and freshly ground black pepper if desired.