Chef’s Handyman, table

Venere risotto – Mediterranean dish

No, the rice has not been colored with ink. The dark rice will delight your guests. Venere rice is a wholemeal product, which grows in the Piedmont area in Italy. The rice is dehusked but not polished, that is the reason for the dark color. The taste of the Venere rice is nutty and the texture is a bit crunchy. The rice is made to serve with fruits or vegetables, which give the dishes an exotic twist. In the past, only emperors had the chance to eat this rice in China.


Chef’s Handyman, Venere risotto with peaches & fennel

Venere risotto with peaches & saffron fennel

Directions, chop 1 onion. Heat olive oil in a pan. Glaze the onions. Add 500 g or 1lb. of rice. Deglaze the rice with red wine. Add 2-3 cups of lukewarm vegetable stock at time, stirring continuously, until each portion of stock is absorbed and the rice is al dente.

Reduce to medium heat. Simmer for 20 minutes. For the vegetarian version cut 100 g or 3 oz. of taleggio cheese in pieces. Fold in cheese. Season the risotto rice to taste with salt, black pepper and chili flakes. To finish, fold in 0.5 cups of parmesan cheese. If the risotto is too dry, add more vegetable stock.

For the peaches, wrap 4 peaches in aluminum foil. Place them in oven save tins. Roast the peaches at 200°C or 400°F for 30 minutes or cooked through. Take them out and cut each into slices. For the fennels. Place water in a pan. Add saffron and 1 tsp. of turmeric and 1 tsp. of fennel seeds. Cook on medium heat. Cut 2 fennels into slices. Add them into the pan. Cook them for 15 minutes or cooked through.

Place the Venere risotto into plates or bowls. Add the fennel and the peaches. Garnish with herbs or sprouts and edible flowers.

Shopping list for the Venere risotto with fennel & peaches for 4 serves: 500 g or 1 lb. Venere rice, 1 onion, 3 tbsp. olive oil, 1 cup red wine, 1 l or 4 cups of vegetable stock, salt, black pepper, chili flakes, for the vegetarian version, 100 g or 3.5 oz. taleggio cheese, 5 tbsp. parmesan cheese, for the vegan version, 0.5 cups of coconut milk, 2 tbsp. grated almonds or pistachios, 2 fennels, 1 tsp. fennel seeds, saffron, 1 tsp. turmeric, 4 peaches, edible flowers, sprouts or herbs.

Enjoy the Venere risotto with peaches and fennel and the Italian style. Cheers, your Chef’s Handyman team.