Risoni, sometimes known as Orzo, is Italian pasta that looks like and is cooked similar to rice. It was first introduced to the Italian palate to compensate for the lack of rice.
Similar to rice, it can be cooked as a stand-alone pasta dish, or can be included in soups and salads or used to create risotto style dishes. Add some sweetness and you can use risoni as a dessert and make rice like puddings.
I added Saffron and Turmeric to the Risoni giving it a mild and subtle aromatic taste and a burst of gold colour to offset the Kale And Turkey Polpette which I made and served with the Risoni.
Preparation and cooking times include the time required to make the Kale and Turkey Polpette.
Ingredients 300g Risoni Pasta
1L Vegetable Stock
1 Small Pinch Saffron
1 Teaspoon Turmeric
Kale And Turkey Polpette Pepper to taste
Make the Kale And Turkey Polpette ahead of time and set aside to cook the Risoni. Allow approximately 30 minutes for this.
Place a large saucepan over a medium to high heat and add a very small amount of extra virgin olive oil (1/2 teaspoon will be enough).
Add the Risoni and stir, coating each grain with the olive oil. Then add the saffron and turmeric.
Cook Risoni as you would cook risotto - coat the grains in a little olive oil before adding stock.
Pour a cup’s worth of the vegetable stock into the Risoni and stir through until the stock has been absorbed. Continue adding the vegetable stock and cook the pasta until it is al dente and creamy. It should resemble a risotto. If required add a little pepper to taste.
To make the Risoni cream-like, add the vegetable stock a cup at a time allowing the Risoni to absorb all the liquid during the cooking process.
Serve the Risoni as is or with the Kale and Turkey Polpette. Garnish with a little basil.