Tomato & Basil Risotto

Risotto is one of those dishes that novice cooks live in fear of, and I'm never entirely sure why.  In fact I find it one of the easiest tasty and nutritious one-pot meals to make.  For some reason a myth arose that you can never step away from the pan when cooking risotto, but remember this is Italian peasant food.  Italian mamas made this for centuries with a baby on one hip and a brood playing at her feet.  She definitely would have taken her eye off the pan!  I have always found that a risotto pan only needs half an eye, as long as you are judging the addition of liquid well and don't let the bottom stick.  Go ahead and have a go!


20g salted butter
10ml olive oil
3 tomatoes – peeled, cored, seeded and diced
¼ Spanish onion – diced
½ garlic clove – crushed
220g Arborio rice
400ml vegetable stock
20ml double cream
30g fresh basil – chopped
70g goats cheese – sliced (optional, we used Parmesan instead)
Pinch of ground black pepper
Pinch of salt

You could also add some roasted vegetables, such as 100g butternut squash, diced and roasted, and
½ red pepper, diced and roasted.


1. Heat the oil over a moderate heat and add the onion and garlic to the pan.  Sauté until the onion softens. Then add the tomatoes and seasoning. Sauté for a further 3-4 minutes.
2. Add the rice, mix thoroughly and sauté for 3-4 minutes. You can add the optional roasted
vegetables at this stage.
3. Gradually add the vegetable stock, stirring until all the liquid is absorbed.
4. Continue stirring until the rice is tender and creamy but still firm, then add the butter and cream.
5. To serve, top with basil and cheese.

Tatiana tucking into her risotto with gusto!

Recipe from Sunrise Assisted Living who have a team of award-winning chefs to create delicious and nutritious recipes which are perfect for a healthier New Year.