Recipe Created By:

Danilo Cortellini



ready in

75 minutes



What you will need

  • 320g Riso Gallo CARNAROLI rice
  • 30g grated Grana Padano (or vegan alternative)
  • 25 g unsalted butter (or vegan alternative)
  • 1 litre vegetable stock (easily done with the onion and squash trimmings)
  • 100ml dry white wine
  • 20 g of walnuts
  • 10 g of sunflower seeds
  • 20 g of raisins
  • Nutmeg to grate on top
  • Parsley or carrot tops to garnish
  • Salt and pepper to taste

For the carrot puree

  • 1 large onion (chopped)
  • 500 gr of carrots, chopped
  • 2 tbsp of olive oil
  • 150 gr of unsalted butter (or vegan alternative)
  • 1 head of garlic
  • 1 bay leave
  • 1 sprig of thyme
  • 1 star anise
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 4 cloves

For the parsley pesto

  • 50 gr of leaves
  • 70 ml olive oil
  • 30 gr grated cheese
  • 10 gr walnuts
  • Salt and pepper (to taste)

How to prepare:

Wash and chop the carrots roughly. Now roast in a large frying pan with a drizzle of olive oil, the chopped onion and a good pinch of salt. Cover with a lid and cook on medium heat until soft. Meanwhile in a separate pot, brown the butter with the garlic, the spices and the herbs until well colored. Strain the butter from the spices and herbs directly into the carrots and caramelize all together. Now blitz everything in a processor until you have a smooth carrot purée.

For the pesto place all the ingredients into a processor and blend until you have a grainy paste.

For the risotto

In a large casserole dish, start to dry toast the rice on low heat with a pinch of salt, without adding oil or fat. In this way, the heat reaches the core of each rice grain resulting in a more uniform al dente rice. Keep stirring the rice, so the rice does not catch on the bottom of the pan or burn. When the rice is very hot, pour the wine in. Let the alcohol evaporate, set the cooking time to 16 minutes and add the simmering stock a ladle at a time, little by little. Stir the rice occasionally and keep cooking. Do not over stir with too much energy as it could break the rice grains.

You can now start adding the carrot puree gradually while mixing. Once the time is up, taste the risotto and if you’re happy with the texture remove it from the heat.

This step is called “mantecatura” to make the risotto creamier increasing its natural ooziness with the right gesture and movements.

Add the grated Grana Padano cheese and butter to the rice. Stir to incorporate extra air until the risotto is nice and creamy. Season to taste.

Plate the hot risotto straight away and top with drizzles of pesto. Add a last touch of grated nutmeg and garnish with toasted walnuts, sunflower seeds, raisins and parsley leaves.

Chef’s tip: the pesto to top the risotto can be done with parsley or if you are lucky enough to get carrots with their tops use those instead. Also, remember not to add the spices directly but rather infuse them in the butter as I do to avoid them being too pungent.

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