It's autumn and this means it's time for a lot of tasty recipes. Among the delicious stuff mother nature gives us in this period of the year, there are chestnuts. I've spent the last Sunday having a relaxing walk into the woods, picking up chestnuts and enjoying the crisp air of autumn.
There are many ways to eat these fruits: boiled, roasted, as the main ingredient for cakes, soups, and other stuff. Today I decided to put them in a risotto. I also used an apple: the freshness perfectly marries with the natural sweetness of the chestnuts. The beer adds an extra touch, and it can be also replaced by white wine, depending on your personal taste or by what is in your storage.
Ingredients for two people
180 grams of Rice, better if carnaroli quality.
A white onion
Olive oil, better if Evo
50 grams of butter
50 grams Parmesan cheese
8 or 10 chestnuts if they are small
1 litre of beef broth, or a stock cube.
Some beer, either for the dish or the chef.
If you don't have broth, make one. You can either use beef or vegetable broth. Personally, I prefer beef. If you are in a hurry, use a stock cube, as a good homemade broth take at least three hours to be ready!
Wash the chestnuts, make a little cut on top of each one and boil them all in a pot with a pinch of coarse salt. It will take around 20/30 minutes, depending on how big the chestnuts are. Once they're ready, put them in a colander, and cool them with fresh, cold water. When they're not hot anymore, you can peel and cut them into tiny bits.
While the chestnuts are cooking, cut the onion into small pieces, put them in a large pan, and add two spoons of olive oil. Keep the flame low and let cook the onion a little. Add the rice and let it toast, while constantly stirring it.
Peel the apple and cut it into small cubes, then put them in the pan, pour some beer and stir until it is absorbed. Keep the flame high so the alcohol will evaporate. With a ladle, pour the broth into the pan until the rice is covered. Stir it often, and add broth again until it's almost cooked. Usually it takes 15/20 minutes.
When the rice is ready, add the chestnuts, the butter, and the parmesan cheese. Stir them all and serve.
Your risotto is ready, enjoy!