This Italian classic is all about mellow flavours and perfectly cooked rice.






Skill level

Average: 3.4 (73 votes)


  • 1 small brown onion, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp butter + 1 more, just before serving
  • 350 g (2 cups) Carnaroli, Arborio or Vialone Nano rice (not Basmati or Jasmine)
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 2 litres stock, heated to a gentle simmer
  • ½ cup freshly grated Parmigiano (parmesan)
  • 1 tsp saffron strands
  • 6 prawns, peeled and deveined
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


1. Stir fry the onion gently with oil and 1 tbsp butter. Add a pinch of salt and cook for a few minutes or until the onion is soft.

2. Add the rice and toast with the onion, stirring well, for 1 minute or until translucent.

3. Add the white wine and allow the alcohol to evaporate, stirring gently.

4. Turn the heat down and start adding the stock a ladleful at a time, while stirring gently. Keep adding stock as it gets absorbed, until the rice is cooked. This will take around 15-18 minutes, depending on the type of rice you use.

5. Turn off the heat. Add a generous dusting of Parmigiano, a tbsp of butter and one ladleful of stock. Season to your liking. Stir vigorously to release the starch and create the classic all’onda (‘the way of the waves’) texture. Add the saffron, stir well, add the prawns. Cover with a lid and let it rest for a few minutes to create the perfect mantecatura, creaminess. Shake the pan, then serve in a shallow bowl (when risotto is served in deep bowls it keeps cooking).