Risotto is a rice-based Italian dish. But, oh what a delightful taste sensation is masked by that simple description. Naturally, there are dozens of different recipes and each one reflects the region and the individual chef that gave birth to it.
Risotto differs from ordinary rice dishes because it does not use the now more-or-less standard Asian grain. Instead, it uses a very special type of barley grain from Italy called Arborio. Sometimes, Carnaroli or Vialone is substituted, but they are very similar.
The method of preparation of risotto also differs from ordinary rice. It is fried, not boiled. Naturally, since this is a true Italian dish, olive oil is used instead of safflower or vegetable oil.
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