Risotto al Radicchio is our favourite vegetarian arborio rice dish from Italy.
Our creamy Gorgonzola Risotto recipe is quick and easy to make, ready to serve in under 1 hour.
Fork through this famous rice dish from Venice featuring flavourful olive oil, vegetable stock, squash or pumpkin, radicchio, shallots, turmeric, white wine and gorgonzola cheese.
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What Is Radicchio?
Radicchio is a cultivated form of leafy chicory sometimes known as Italian chicory because of its common use in Italian cuisine.
It is grown as a leafy vegetable and usually has colorful white-veined red leaves that form a head. Radicchio has a bitter and spicy taste which mellows if it is grilled or roasted.
Varieties of radicchio are named after the Italian regions where they originate: the most widely available variety in the United States and Canada is radicchio di chioggia. The farming area for chioggia includes just ten towns from the boroughs of Venice such as Padua and Rovigo.
In Italian cuisine, radicchio is usually eaten grilled with olive oil, or mixed into dishes such as risotto. It can also be served with pasta, or be used in strudel, as a poultry stuffing, or an ingredient for a tapenade.
What is Gorgonzola?
Gorgonzola is a veined blue cheese, originally from Italy, made from unskimmed cow’s milk. It can be buttery or firm, crumbly and quite salty, with a sharp bite thanks to its blue veining.
Gorgonzola has been produced for centuries in Gorgonzola, Milan, acquiring its greenish-blue marbling in the 11th century.
Today, gorgonzola is produced worldwide, with high concentrations of production located in the northern Italian regions of Piedmont and Lombardy.
We add crumbled gorgonzola cheese to our homemade Risotto al Radicchio recipe to make it rich, creamy, and full of flavour.
Travel to Italy by Cooking Risotto al Radicchio at Home
I love traveling to Europe!
During my first visit to the continent I traveled for 5 months by train and plane. I had the opportunity to eat my way through Ireland, Scotland, England, Wales, Portugal, Spain, France, Belgium, Holland, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland,Russia, Estonia, Latvia, Poland, Czech, Germany, Austria, Croatia, Bosnia, Hungary, Slovakia, Greece, Turkey and Italy.
What I love most about traveling to Italy is the opportunity to sample unique dishes in each region and city. The dishes in Tuscany (Florence, Pisa, Volterra, Saturnia, Pitigliano, Sorano, Montalcino, Siena) are unique from what you’d find in Venice, Modena, Milan, Rome, and Amalfi Coast.
Risotto al Radicchio is a dish unique to Venice. It’s a must try vegetarian entree for those enjoying a romantic float through the city’s scenic canals.
Once back home from an Italian holiday you’ll have a newfound appreciation for the flavours of Venice and can impress friends and family by making our authentic Gorgonzola Risotto al Radicchio recipe!
Where To Eat Gorgonzola Risotto
Haven’t traveled to Italy before? It may be helpful to first sample Gorgonzola Risotto at a local Italian restaurant to better understand how the dish is served. You can also assess the ideal consistency of the risotto, radicchio to squash ratio and amount of blue cheese to make the dish perfectly creamy.
In Toronto, popular Italian restaurants in Yorkville, King West and Ossington that may serve authentic Risotto al Radicchio includeBar Vendetta, Buca, Superpoint, Amano, Fabbrica, Oretta, FIGO, Nodo, Locale Mercatto, The Good Son, Taverna Mercatto, Ascari Enoteca, Il Fornello or Gusto 101.
My Family Loves Gorgonzola Risotto al Radicchio
I love cooking Gorgonzola Risotto for my family.
I first made this traditional arborio rice dish from Venice on a winter weekend at our cottage in Muskoka. Since the decadent dish is hearty it’s the perfect Italian main course to serve during the cooler months of the year, especially in the Fall when squash and pumpkin are in season in Ontario.
I knew my family would fall in love with Risotto al Radicchio as my parentslove carbs and cheese. My father’s favourite soup is Roasted Pumpkin and Sweet Potato Soup so I knew the dish would be a big hit!
Each steaming spoonful is a gastronomic delight! In each bite you’ll enjoy hits of al dente arborio rice, bitter and tender radicchio, juicy and sweet squash or pumpkin and creamy blue cheese.
Risotto al Radicchio Health Benefits
Our vegetarian risotto recipe is packed full of healthy ingredients!
Olive Oil is ranked as one of the healthiest fats and is a staple in the Mediterranean diet. It contains vitamins E and K and plenty of beneficial fatty acids and antioxidants.
Shallots are a humble vegetable packed with vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals. Regular consumption of onions can help boost digestive health and reduce the risk of developing heart disease.
The star component of turmeric is curcumin, a potent phytochemical that has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. It is often prescribed in Indian Ayurvedic medicine to help relieve arthritis, aid digestion and inhibit the growth of cancers.
All varieties of pumpkin (or squash) are nutritious, but butternut squash is a superfood because it contains high levels of carotenoids, which help combat cancer and support skin health.
Radicchio is low in calories, fat and sodium. It is a good source of fibre, iron, folate, and vitamin C. Lettuce is also a good source of various other health-beneficial bioactive compounds.
Nearly 50% of the people in the world get over 50% of their daily calories from rice. If eating brown rice featuring nutritious bran you’ll enjoy health benefits like cancer risk reduction and diabetes control.
Consuming dairy products (such as milk and cheese) provides health benefits — especially improved bone health. Dairy foods provide nutrients that are vital for health and maintenance of your body. These nutrients include calcium, potassium, vitamin D, and protein.
Gorgonzola Risotto Cooking Tips
This vegetarian risotto recipe is quick and easy to make at home.
- Use a high quality nonstick skillet to prepare risotto.
- In order to create a creamy risotto, be sure to warm the vegetable stock in a small pot before stirring it into the arborio rice.
- We suggest using a dry white wine such as Pinot Gris or Pinot Grigio.
- We’ve used butternut squash in this recipe but you could use any squash or pumpkin.
- We used shallots in this recipe but you could substitute for Spanish Onions or sweet Vidalia onions.
- Feel free to add an additional crunch to your risotto by garnishing each plate with toasted or roasted pine nuts or hazelnuts.
What To Serve with Risotto al Radicchio
There’s nothing more comforting than cozying up to a bowl of homemade risotto.
If you’re hosting an Italian-themed dinner party we suggest serving Risotto al Radicchio alongsideInstant Pot Short Rib Ragu, Cheesy Polenta, Ricotta Gnocchi, Creamy Warm Orzo Lemon Salad, Involtini di Pollo, Parmesan Ditalini Soup, Aperol Gin Cocktails and Amaretto Disaronno Sour.
For a light lunch or dinner, pair this Gorgonzola Risotto with fresh salads like Vegetarian Roasted Pumpkin Feta Salad, Roasted Beetroot Salad, Garlic Lemon Chickpea Avocado Salad and Fennel, Apple, Celery and Roasted Hazelnut Salad.
After dinner why not dazzle your guests with one of our popular desserts such as Kardemummabullar Swedish Cardamom Buns , Gevulde Speculaas, Turmeric Pumpkin Spice Indian Cake, Chewy Easter Toffee Cadbury Mini Egg Cookie Bars, Oat Flour Cookies with Chocolate Chips, Dark Chocolate Lindt Lindor Cookies, Maraschino Cherry Cupcakes Recipe or Cinnamon Babka.
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How To Make Gorgonzola Risotto al Radicchio
Gorgonzola Risotto al Radicchio
- measuring cups
- measuring spoons
- Large Skillet
- French knife
- Spatula or Wooden Spoon
- 5 cups Vegetable Stock
- 4 tbsp Olive Oil
- 1 lb Pumpkin or Squash seeded, peeled and cut into cubes
- 1 lb Radicchio finely chopped
- Kosher Salt
- 8 Shallots finely chopped
- 3 cups Arborio Rice
- 1/2 tsp Ground Turmeric
- 1/2 cup Dry White Wine
- 3 oz Gorgonzola crumbled
- In a large saucepan, bring the stock to a simmer over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to low to keep the stock at a simmer.
- In a saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat. Add the diced pumpkin and radicchio and season with salt. Cook until softened, 15-18 minutes. Spoon the mixture into a bowl and set aside. Wipe out the pan.
- Add the remaining olive oil to the saucepan and heat over medium heat. Add the shallots and cook until softened, about 3 minutes. Add the rice and stir well to coat. Saute for a few minutes. Add a ladle of hot stock along with the pumpkin/radicchio mixture and gently stir. Stir in the turmeric. When the liquid is mostly absorbed, add another ladle of stock, stirring constantly and adding more once each addition is absorbed to keep the rice covered at all times. Repeat the process, stirring constantly, until the rice is creamy but still al dente, 15-18 minutes. Add white wine.
- When the rice is cooked to your liking, stir in the gorgonzola. Season with salt and serve immediately.
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