The traditional risotto recipe originated in northern Italy in the 16th century. However, tomatoes did not become a widely used ingredient in Italian cuisine until the 18th century, when they were brought to Europe from the Americas. It is believed that the combination of tomatoes with risotto, which is traditionally made with butter, onion, and Parmesan cheese, was a natural evolution of the dish. Today, risotto pomodoro is a popular dish in Italian cuisine, enjoyed both in restaurants and homes around the world.
The key here is the right pan - your going to want a wide pot or pan - and patience. Introduce the ingredients one at a time, the broth and sauce are your liquid to hydrate your risotto (rice). Make sure to keep stirring as to not let it stick on the bottom. A medium heat is good.
Optional, you can add seafood to this dish which i love to do in the summer time. Mussels, clams, shrimp, and / or calamari really spices this dish up.
Monte’s Tomato Sauce
2 cups cherry tomatoes
5 cups low-sodium chicken broth
2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
1 medium onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 cup arborio or carnaroli rice
2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
2oz. finely grated Parmesan (about 1 cup), plus more shaved for serving
Freshly ground black pepper
Bring broth to a simmer in a medium saucepan; keep warm over medium-low heat until ready to use.
Meanwhile, heat 2 Tbsp. oil in a large saucepan over medium. Add onion and cook, stirring often, until golden and very soft, 8–10 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring, until softened, about 1 minute. Add Monte’s Tomato Sauce and cook, stirring often, until it darkens slightly and begins to stick to pan, about 2 minutes. Add tomatoes and nutmeg, if using, and cook, stirring occasionally, until some of the tomatoes begin to burst, about 2 minutes.
Stir in rice; season with salt, and reduce heat to medium-low. Cook, stirring, until some grains are translucent, about 3 minutes. Ladle in 2 cups broth and simmer, stirring frequently, until completely absorbed, 8–10 minutes. Ladle in another 2 cups broth and continue to cook, stirring frequently, until rice is cooked through and most of the broth is absorbed, 12–15 minutes.
Add butter, 2 oz. Parmesan, and remaining 1 cup broth and cook, stirring constantly, until risotto is very creamy looking, about 4 minutes. Taste and season with more salt if needed. Divide risotto among bowls. Top with shaved Parmesan and lots of pepper and drizzle with more oil.