Bacon Leek Risotto

We’ve been experimenting with risotto lately. Now that I’m an avowed maker of my own stocks, I occasionally have more than I can store and risotto is a great way to use up 4-6 cups at a time. Plus, the ritual of adding the broth and stirring is strangely relaxing. We stocked up on Arborio and Carnaroli rice on our road trip to Italy, so we’ve got plenty of risotto ingredients. This recipe from the (adorably named) blog Rootie Tootie Fresh & Foodie has been a go-to of ours for a while now.

5 c chicken broth
1 T olive oil
6 slices bacon, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
3 leeks, sliced into rounds
1 clove garlic, minced
1 1/2 c Arborio rice
3/4 c dry white wine
3 T chopped parsley (plus more for topping)
1 T butter
2 T parmesan cheese, grated (plus more for topping)

Bring broth to a simmer in a medium saucepan and cover to keep warm.

Heat oil in heavy skillet over medium heat. Add bacon and cook until edges are beginning to crisp. Remove bacon drippings except for 1 tablespoon and add leeks to skillet. Stir leeks frequently (if pan seems dry, add a little more olive oil) until beginning to soften. Add garlic and cook, stirring frequently, for another 2 minutes.

Add rice to skillet, stir well until all grains are glossy, about 2 minutes. Add wine to skillet and stir until absorbed. Add 1/2 cup broth (about 1 ladle-full) to skillet and stir constantly. When most of the broth is absorbed, add another 1/2 cup and repeat this process (always stirring) until rice is tender but firm to bite and sauce is creamy – about 20-25 minutes.

When you’re happy with the texture, add the parsley, butter and cheese and salt and pepper to taste. Stir well and remove from heat. Allow risotto to stand for 1-2 minutes before serving.