Risotto with Taleggio and Wild Carrot Honey

G: The inspiration for this risotto was a nomadic beekeeper I met in Italy, who moves across the peninsula seasonally-a bee shepherd. His fantastic honeys are tied to the seasons. His wild carrot honey was one of my favorites, and combined with the melted Taleggio it was a wonderful discovery. If you can't find wild carrot honey, sunflower or any meadow flower honey works nicely. I wouldn't use a tree honey like pine though, because they tend to be more aggressive and bitter in flavor. You want a dollop of sweetness here, the way a drizzle of olive oil finishes a dish, not something that turns your risotto into a syrupy soup.
  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 50 min
  • Prep: 10 min
  • Inactive: 5 min
  • Cook: 35 min
  • Yield: 4 to 6 servings
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Ingredients

4 cups vegetable stock, homemade or store-bought

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

1 shallot, finely dice

1 cup Carnaroli rice

1/2 cup dry white wine

1/4 pound Taleggio or La Tur cheese, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, plus more for serving

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1/2 head Treviso radicchio, thinly sliced

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh Italian parsley

4 to 6 teaspoons wild carrot honey or sunflower honey

Directions

  1. In a small pot, heat the stock over medium-low heat until just before boiling. Reduce the heat to low and keep warm. In a deep, 14-inch nonstick saute pan, heat the olive oil and butter over medium-high heat. Add the shallot and saute for 2 to 3 minutes, until the shallot is softened but not colored. Add the rice and stir well, making sure to coat all the grains in oil. Toss the rice a few times, then add the wine and let it reduce for 2 to 3 minutes. 
  2. Reduce the heat to medium-low and slowly start adding the stock, a 4- to 6-ounce ladleful at a time. Stir constantly, giving the rice time to absorb the liquid each time before adding another ladleful, until the rice is al dente, 15 to 25 minutes. 
  3. Add the Taleggio and let it melt completely, about 4 minutes. Add the Parmesan and season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove the pan from the heat and add the radicchio, stirring to mix it well with the rice. 
  4. Serve on plates garnished with the parsley, a touch of grated Parmesan, and lastly, a generous teaspoon of the honey.

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