As soon as I had the first bite, I was in love. This risotto is not included into the culinary traditions of my family: before last Sunday, nobody had ever heard of it, I must tell the truth!
The first time I tasted it was in the restaurant of a friend, Barbara – she propose it as extra menu dish to give me a try: I was fascinated from the richeness of flavors and from the way the taste of reed tripe was enhanced by the preparation and the rice. I had no idea of the recipe, so when I found myself with leftover reed tripe I tried to figure out a way to make this risotto, but in the end I discovered that my procedure does not differ much from the traditional recipe of Florence, where reed tripe is not only well known, but I would say celebrated, part of the culinary tradition of the city.
Let us see how to recycle the leftover reed tripe, or – changing perspective – how to make a slightly unusual risotto!
Ingredients for 4 people:
- reed tripe, about 500 gr
- celery, 2 stalks
- red onion, 1 (half for the stock and half for the risotto)
- carrots, 1
- ripe tomatoes, 2
- rice, 400 gr (a creamy rice to make risotto)
- extra virgin olive oil
- Parmesan cheese
- ground black pepper
As you can see, the ingredients are almost the same as last recipe for the making of reed tripe panino. Add all the ingredients in a pot of cold water: reed tripe – previously rinsed – celery, onion, carrot and tomatoes. Add a generous handful of salt.
When the water begins to boil, cook the reed tripe for about an hour, so that it becomes soft and gives all its flavor to the broth.
When an hour has passed, remove the pan from heat and drain well reed tripe, cut it into thin stripes of about 1 cm wide and 5 cm long.
I make risotto with extra virgin olive oil, but you can also follow the tradition and use the butter: cover the bottom of a nonstick skillet with extravirgin olive oil and then sautee the onion, chopped finely. Add reed tripe and rice and stir to toast and flavor the rice. Then cook the rice adding gradually reed tripe broth: remember to stir often, because doing so the rice will release its starch and become much more creamy, without the addition of ‘helping’ tricks!
Once cooked, add a few tablespoons of grated Parmesan cheese and mix with conviction and strenght the risotto. Serve with a freshly ground black pepper.