Squid-ink Risotto Par Excellence

squid-ink risotto with squid

squid-ink risotto with squid

daughter bought me an excellent squid-ink risotto at father’s day dinner at follia recently on 20.6.2015.^^

i really liked the flavours of the risotto with good shellfish stock, smooth & creamy. the proprietor told us later though it was butter & no cream.

so i thought i will do one with butter & no cream.

i do a very good squid-ink pasta myself but have not tried it on risotto.

i decided not to use browned garlic & alio olio flavours. i did not have chicken stock so i cut up 1 carrot, 1 whole yellow onion, some leeks leftover in the chiller & put in the crockpot overnight to make a vegetable stock. that should be enough with the squid ink & sauce from pan-fried squid.

squid-ink risotto with squid

squid-ink risotto with squid

& it was an excellent squid-ink risotto, about same or very close to the follia standard.^^

squid-ink risotto with squid

squid-ink risotto with squid

for the preparation –

get enough squid ink – the normal elongated squid has very little ink so needs about 5 large squids, i happened to have a flat squid (cuttlefish) in the freezer & that has a lot of ink.

i had 2 medium squid. these were very thin, so i cut them in rings instead of the usual cross/chequered cut

i seasoned with fish sauce & white pepper & butter-fried the squid & set aside.

i fried & softened 1 cut red onion in olive oil, added the squid ink & then added 1 cup of carnaroli rice & coat the rice

i added 1.5 cups of stock (including draining the sauce from the fried squid) to cover the rice & bring to boil

then i placed in a preheated 205degC oven for 10minutes.

squid-ink risotto with squid

squid-ink risotto with squid

the rice would be like 80% to 90% cooked, centre still slightly hard not yet al dente. i added salt to taste.

squid-ink risotto with squid

squid-ink risotto with squid

i did not read up any recipe, but i guessed the butter had to be added at the time of tossing, otherwise will be just boiling butter. 🙂

just like adding butter to toss for my mentaiko pasta.

squid-ink risotto with squid

squid-ink risotto with squid

when serving-

i added another cup of stock & boiled & reduced, checking that the risotto is al dente & not overcooked

then i added the pre-fried squid, again so that they were not overcooked & rubbery

i cut about 20g butter into small cubes, off the fire & toss the butter with the risotto

& it worked wonders. i say almost the exact same flavours & texture like what we had at follia.

c.h.e.f andy

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Chicken Ballotine

chicken ballotine

chicken ballotine

tried a chicken ballotine the last few days.

when we were in cornwall recently, we had a really good mother’s day lunch at gurnard’s head on 10.5.2015 & the chicken ballotine was excellent. ^^

i googled for the recipe & found a really pretty chicken ballotine at whereismyspoon.com.

chicken balotinechicken balotine

chicken ballotine

in my first attempt, i put too much filling & it was not easy to roll & make it hold tight, especially when cutting.

chicken balotine

chicken balotine

anyway it was easy enough to make (i used chicken breast instead of thigh)-

butterfly a chicken breast (i cut from whole fresh chicken & remove skin)

cover with a large cling film (later used to wrap & steam the chicken) & pound & flatten (i use a metal soup ladle…can use rolling pin)

season with 2 teaspoon fish sauce

i added white pepper, paprika, parsley flakes

chicken balotine

chicken balotine

for the fillings, i –

slightly browned 2 streaky bacons on non stick pan on low fire

fried 1/2 cut onions in butter to soften

then add a bunch of spinach

chicken balotine

chicken ballotine

i laid the bacon strips first, throw on some cheddar cheese shreds, then added the onions & spinach.

i rolled tightly in the cling film & twisted the ends to tighten.

then placed in a metal dish to steam for 15minutes.

#2 chicken ballotine

#2 chicken ballotine

must say the taste was really quite good, steamed meat was very tender not tough or overcooked, & the sweet onions & spinach & not overly strong flavours of the bacon was a great enhancement. 🙂

chicken ballotine

chicken ballotine

can certainly improved on the looks. this one had too much fillings.

chicken balotine

chicken ballotine

fillings were reduced & looked better.

chicken balotine

chicken ballotine

i did not blend the fillings this time. may try that next time or just chopped up the bacon & fry lightly.

c.h.e.f andy