TOMATO RISOTTO WITH FENNEL SEEDS or RISOTTO DI POMODORI CON SEMI DI FINOCCHIO

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I have been ‘dining out’ now for two evenings, I’m blessed with some nice neighbours who have invited us in order to make us feel welcome back and I’m both touched and feeling lousy because I don’t do that to them. Sure they are a whole clan and that doesn’t leave much space for initiatives for us on the outside but anyway. Well I suppose I should stop being so self-centered and relate everything to myself and just appreciate what I am given and try to be good in some other way. If possible. But what I really wanted to say is that it is so good to be back and eat Italian again; after my uninspired cooking in Sweden it feels like discovering that I can walk again and my taste buds are rejoicing. I like most of the world’s cuisines but I love Italian cooking for my everyday meals and then I’m not talking about pizza and pasta, not that there’s anything wrong with pizza and pasta, quite the contrary, but there’s so much more to Italian food! And there are such a difference between the recipes from the north and those from the south, not counting those of the Middle, that I could spend the rest of my life trying out new dishes. This dish is like a fusion between the risotto of the north with the tomatoes of the south, the fennel seeds being an Ilvian touch!

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TOMATO RISOTTO WITH FENNEL SEEDS or RISOTTO DI POMODORI CON SEMI DI FINOCCHIO

1 small onion
3 tsp fennel seed, crushed
400 ml / 1.7 cup rice for risotto, Arborio or Carnaroli for example. I used Vialone nano
1000 ml / 4.2 cups vegetable stock
400 ml / 1.7 cup tomato sauce. Please use fresh homemade tomato sauce as it is important for the taste!
Extra virgin olive oil

– Slice the onion and braise it some olive oil together with the fennel seeds until the onion is transparent.
– Add the rice and stir until the oil has imbibed the rice grains properly.
– Start adding a ladle of stock at a time, stirring all the time and when the rice has absorbed the stock you add another ladle and then you go on like that until the rice is half cooked.
– Now you start adding the tomato sauce instead of the stock and go on doing this until the rice is ready.
– Serve!

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L