Tomato Risotto

IMG-20140214-00896Risotto is a staple of Northern Italian cookery using arborio rice (this is a must- thank you to our Italian friends for pointing that out). From a simple basis there are endless varieties.

Andrew: This is very labour intensive, but quite simple. A dreamy and filling meal.

Dawn: It sounds it! Love tomatoes!


Serves 4

Two tins of plum tomatoes

2 cloves of garlic

Olive Oil

A few basil leaves

250g risotto rice

15-20 baby plum tomatoes- halved

1 tbsp pesto sauce

1 red onion- finely chopped

1 further garlic clove

75g parmesan

A further handful of basil leaves

Chicken stock- 1-1.5 litres

200g unsalted butter

1 tbs thyme leaves

1 glass white wine

Andrew: You need to follow each step carefully.

Dawn: I will crack on with the tomato sauce!


  • To make the tomato sauce, gently fry the two cloves of garlic in a little olive oil, then add the tinned tomatoes and first set of torn basil leaves,cooking for 15 minutes so the sauce thickens and turns a deep shade of red. Leave aside when cooked.
  • Meanwhile leave the halved baby plum tomatoes marinating in the pesto sauce and a drizzle of olive oil.
  • In a large frying pan, melt half of the butter and add a drizzle of olive oil over a medium heat.
  • Fry the onion and garlic for 5 minutes until softened, then add the rice and stir until all the grains are coated in the melted butter.
  • Add the thyme then the wine, and keep stirring until absorbed.
  • Add the tomato sauce, stirring so well mixed. Turn the heat to a simmer.
  • This is the laborious part. You need to add the chicken stock ladle by ladle, stirring as it absorbs, and not letting it stick to the pan.
  • This process will take 20-25 minutes. Taste the rice to ensure it is cooked.This will happen ‘suddenly’!
  • When the rice is cooked, stir in the marinated tomatoes, the remaining butter and the parmesan.
  • Serve immediately with salad of your choice.

Dawn: Wow! Amazing!

Andrew: It is. A little hard work but worth it.

In the next few weeks we will be promoting other risotto recipes. Join in the fun at and the Twitter feed @Love_Food_UK and please like us on Facebook if you enjoy our recipes. Thank you!

How to Boil Rice

DSCI2039Having been asked to help people boil rice properly so as to eliminate burnt saucepans, here’s a very simple approach to getting boiled rice that’s nice, fluffy – and leaves your saucepan clean!


Allow 60-80g of dried rice per person (dependent upon hunger)

A pinch of salt



  • Put the dried rice in a sieve and rinse with cold water. Set aside.
  • In a medium saucepan, put cold water and a pinch of salt. Put the saucepan on a medium heat and bring the water to the boil.
  • Put the rinsed rice in the boiling water, stir the rice and boil for 1 minute.
  • Reduce the heat of the hob and simmer the rice for 11-14 minutes. Stir occasionally.
  • When cooked, the rice will appear swollen in grain size and fluffy. Pour the boiled rice into the sieve and rinse with hot, boiled water.
  • With a fork, fluff-up the rice and serve.

Dawn: Simples!

Andrew: Mmm…what to serve with it? 

For more “How to…” from @Love_Food_UK‘s essentials range, follow this blog – – and the Twitter account.