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Risotto in Lemon Cups

By 9:21 AM , ,

I actually found this recipe while searching for risotto recipes on the Food Network site. I came across this gem and realized that I had actually seen the episode where Giada made these. I remember thinking how pretty they looked and how perfect these would be with the rosemary chicken that I was making.

I usually am a big fan of risotto - but only if it's done right. So I guess it would be fair to say I'm a little particular about my risotto. I had only made risotto once before, and though a big hit, I was kind of nervous about this. It turned out perfectly! It honestly was one of the best risottos I have ever had (restaurant orders included!). It was so rich and creamy - but the lemon gives it this brightness and this bite that is out of this world. And the presentation is lovely - making it wonderful as a side or as an appetizer, which is what Giada made them as.

Risotto in a Lemon Cup
~Giada De Laurentiis

2 cups low-sodium chicken broth (1 can)
2 tablespoons butter, plus 1 tablespoon
1 large shallot, diced
1 cup Arborio rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan, plus 2 tablespoons (I used shredded)
2 tablespoons mascarpone cheese
1/2 a lemon, zested amd juiced
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
6 lemons, for serving

In a medium saucepan bring the broth and 1/2 cup water to a simmer. Cover the broth and keep hot over low heat.

In a medium, heavy saucepan, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter over medium heat. Add the shallot and saute until tender but not brown, about 3 minutes. Add the rice and stir to coat with the butter. Add the wine and simmer until the wine has almost completely evaporated, about 3 minutes. Add 1/2 cup of the simmering broth and stir until almost completely absorbed, about 2 minutes. Continue cooking the rice, adding the broth 1/2 cup at a time, stirring constantly and allowing each addition of the broth to absorb before adding the next, until the rice is tender but still firm to the bite and the mixture is creamy, about 20 minutes. Remove from the heat. Stir in the remaining tablespoon of butter, 2 tablespoons of Parmesan, mascarpone cheese, the lemon zest and juice, and the salt and pepper.

To serve, cut 1/4-inch off the bottom of each lemon so they stand on their own. Take 1-inch off the stem end. Using a grapefruit spoon scoop out the flesh of the lemon and discard. Fill each lemon with about 1/2 cup of risotto. Sprinkle the tops with the remaining 2 tablespoons of Parmesan. Serve immediately.

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