serves 3-5 (with possible leftovers)
max: 2hrs to cook + 30mins prep time:
8-10 large tomatoes – ripe
2 tbsp olive oil
3-4 potatoes (optional)
1 large onion (finely diced)
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
arborio rice 400g
shredded chicken 250g
grated edam (optional but is nice)
- Take two large bowls, one metal, one any kind. Fill up a kettle to the top and set it to boil. You want to fill the metal bowl with at least five cups of boiling water. (optional: supplement some of the water with dry white cheap wine.) Crumble three chicken oxo cubes into the metal bowl, then pour in the boiling water.
- Open your packet of Arbello rice and pour 400gms into the other bowl.
- Chop the top and end of an onion, peel it, then slice and dice.
- Put a pot of water on to boil and take your frozen peas out of the freezer.
- Heat up your frying pan on high, when it’s emitting heat, drop in 50g of butter.
- Then add your onion.
- Stir until your onion is translucent or starting to brown.
- Turn your element right down to medium heat. Take the pan off the heat, and stir your onion until it stops spitting and going nuts.
- Then put it back on the heat and add all of your rice.
- When the pot is boiling, add your frozen peas and cook for 3 minutes then drain.
- Now start with just ½ cup of oxo gravy (and wine — optional), pour into the pan and start stirring that rice, keep stirring until the rice has absorbed all of the liquid. Keep doing this one cup at a time, and finish with half a cup, until you’ve added five cups. As you do this, do not add another cup until all of the liquid from the last time, has been absorbed. After five, you can stop adding gravy mixture.
- When you are dipping your measuring cup into the bowl to pick up gravy, try to get as much of the thick stock at the bottom in your cup as possible – we want lots of flavour.
- Next you want to add the peas and a big bag of shredded chicken (300g max) stir the rice mixture a bit and now you can chop some mushrooms. Add them, too. If you use a wok you can stir the mixture easily without making a huge mess. Turn the heat up slightly and taste your rice. It should be soft but still has a bit of a crunch to it. Stir the rice mixture until it becomes sloppy – 5 to 10mins. You can taste when it’s done, the rice will have no crunch and the mixture will have a sticky texture.
- Cut off tops of tomatoes (retain tops) and carefully scoop out flesh with a dessert spoon (retain this flesh as well.)
- Place tomatoes in a casserole dish or tin large enough to hold them comfortably and give each veg a tiny dash of sugar with the tips of your fingertips.
- Take tomato flesh and set it aside in the fridge for another meal.
- Spoon (with a dessert spoon) some of the risotto into the tomatoes and replace the tops.
- Spoon (with a mixing spoon) the rest of the risotto into a deep roasting ceramic dish.
- Add a layer of grated edam cheese on top of the stuffed tomatoes.
- And put in the oven @ 180-220 (depending on the power of your oven) degrees C for 45mins while you also cook some washed potatoes chopped into wedges and drizzled with olive oil in an oven tray (flip these casually after 20mins.)
- Take out the wedges and put in the microwave in a bowl. Add a decent layer of parmesan to the risotto and put in the oven with the stuffed tomatoes for 15-20mins.
- Warm the wedges in the microwave and serve all three dishes onto plates.