The color of Risotto alla Milanese says it all: this dish is here to make a statement. With its sunny golden hue and deeply fragrant saffron aroma, it’s impossible not to dig into a warm bowl of this creamy Italian grain dish as soon as it's plated.
Nor should you wait! Risotto is a delicate dish intended to be enjoyed straight out of the pot. The talented risotto chef can strike the perfect balance between grains, cooking liquid and time so that the rice holds its shape on the plate without being stiff.
Serving Risotto Milanese
This classic Milanese dish is often served with osso bucco, a rich dish of braised beef bones. Soft bone marrow enriches the rice further, keeping the risotto tender and moist on your plate. For a more pared-down version of this traditional Italian pairing, serve your risotto alla milanese with braised short ribs or roast chicken.
What is Vialone Nano Rice?
This recipe features vialone nano, one of the three varieties of rice used in Italian risotto. The other two are carnaroli and arborio. Vialone nano rice differs from its close cousins because of its medium-grain shape. Where arborio is long and thick and carnaroli is short and squat, vialone nano sits right in the middle.
It’s moderately starchy and absorbs liquid more easily than arborio but not quite as readily as carnaroli. Cooking vialone nano rice yields soft, tender risotto with more shape and firmness in the grains than you find in a risotto made from arborio but less texture than carnaroli rice yields.
Give all three grains a try at home with our favorite risotto recipes and discover the texture, flavor and look that you like best. The great part about all of these grains is that they readily absorb flavor and seamlessly pair with seasonings from all around the world.