Sweet Corn Risotto with Basil Oil

My close friends and I have started doing virtual Chopped competitions featuring a star ingredient chosen by the previous winner. For our first competition, we decided rice would be a good pantry staple to feature. This recipe was made using ingredients that we already had on hand and I've listed the traditional recipe as well as my quarantine substitutes in case you're making this recipe during a time when you have more access to the grocery store. Dave and I were both happy with how this recipe turned out and I loved the special pop from the basil oil. It added nice color as well as a different flavor profile.

Vegetarian and Cooking original.

-3 cups of corn kernels
-5-6 cups vegetable stock
-1 large onion, diced
-1 1/4 cups arborio rice
-1/4 cup dry white wine
-2 tablespoons butter
-1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
-Salt and pepper

Basil Oil
-1/2 cup fresh basil
-1/4 cup olive oil

**Quarantine substitutions**
  1. I used both canned and frozen corn to make up the three cups
  2. I used dried vegetable soup, re-hydrated then strained to create the vegetable stock
  3. I used 1 cup arborio rice and a 1/4 cup dried brown rice
  4. I added a pinch of turmeric for color. I don't think it altered the flavor and you can leave it out. It helped make the rice look uniform since I used a mix of arborio and brown rice since I was photoing this for a virtual competition

Puree 1 cup of the corn kernels in a blender and pour the mixture into a medium pot with the vegetable stock. Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat so the stock is simmering.

In a small skillet over medium heat toast one cup of the corn kernels to give them a little bit of color. Remove from the heat and set aside once the kernels are golden brown on both sides.

Coat the bottom of a large skillet with olive oil and heat over medium heat. Add the onion and saute until tender for about five minutes. Add the rice and saute for about two minutes before adding the white wine. Stir the white wine into the rice until almost fully evaporated. Add a ladle of the stock to the rice. Continue stirring the rice until it almost absorbs all of the vegetable stock before adding more vegetable stock. Continue adding stock until the rice is cooked al dente and the mixture is creamy (about thirty minutes). You may not add all of the stock and that's okay! Once the rice is cooked through add the butter, cheese, and remaining two cups of corn kernels. Season with salt and pepper.

To make the basil oil, bring a small pot of water to a boil and fill a small bowl with ice water. Add the fresh basil leaves to the boiling water for fifteen seconds and then immediately plunge the herbs into the ice water to stop the cooking. Blend the blanched basil and oil together until smooth.

Serve drizzled with basil oil and some chiffonaded basil.


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