This is probably one of the best risottos I've made.

This is probably one of the best risottos I've made.

I bought a really big zucchini this week intending to make a chocolate chip zucchini cake, but the monster produced more grated zucchini than my cake needed. Tonight’s dinner featured the leftover shredded zucchini, along with a few other goodies I had hanging out waiting to be included in something wonderful. I decided to make a summer risotto with zucchini as the main focus, which will add one more recipe to my repertoire for dealing with these abundant veggies.

Creamy Zucchini Risotto
serves 4

  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion, finely diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup Arborio rice
  • 4-5 cups water
  • 2 cups shredded zucchini
  • 1/3 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1/3 cup grated Pecorino Romano
  • salt
  • pepper
  • pinch of fresh ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup diced cherry tomatoes, for garnish
  1. Bring water to a boil in a small pan. Reduce to a simmer and cover.
  2. In a larger pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and cook, stirring constantly, for 2-3 minutes. Add rice and cook, stirring constantly, until rice begins to look clear.
  3. Add a few ladles of hot water to the rice mixture, just enough to cover by about an inch. Cook over medium heat, stirring often. As mixture becomes drier, add more water to keep it really wet. Add a pinch of salt at this time, but not so much that it tastes fully salted (we’ll do that later).
  4. When the rice is done (taste it once it starts to look done), stop adding water and cook until it is thick, but still moist. Add zucchini, and stir in. Cook for 2 minutes or so, just enough to heat zucchini through.
  5. Remove from heat and stir in ricotta and Romano cheese and nutmeg. Add salt and pepper to taste. Spoon into serving bowl and top with cherry tomatoes.
  6. Enjoy.
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