Quick, before fresh corn is no longer available, you must try making this risotto with sweet corn and roasted cherry tomatoes. I know it sounds a little crazy to add carbs to carbs, but it really is a great combination of flavors and textures. The roasted cherry tomatoes on the side add another level of sweetness that you can’t stop eating. I debated whether to add the tomatoes directly into the risotto while cooking it, but decided I didn’t want a pink or red risotto. Besides, they look so pretty whole, clustered on the vine atop the dish.
I grilled the corn, not so much to cook it, but to get grill marks that look nice as garnish. It’s a step you can skip if you want, since the corn will be stripped off the cob and cooked with the rice. But if you’d like to dress up your finished dish, just smear the cob with a little butter and grill for a couple of minutes, on an outdoor grill, or a grill pan.
Strip the corn off the cob, setting aside some of the pieces that have the best grill marks on them. You’ll use them on the top of the finished dish.
Don’t throw out the cobs. Add them to the broth or cooking water. Even if it’s only for a few minutes, any little time simmering with the water helps to impart some flavor.
Meanwhile, drizzle the cherry tomatoes with olive oil, then sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes or until the skins start to split open.
While the tomatoes are roasting, make the risotto. I’ve blogged about many different types of risottos before, so I won’t detail it here, except to say that you need the broth to be hot when adding it, ladleful by ladleful. Directions for this risotto are in the recipe below.
Serve with the roasted cherry tomatoes on top, and enjoy this taste of summer on a plate.
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- 1 cup arborio rice
- about 4 cups liquid - chicken broth, vegetable broth or a combination.
- I used two cups chicken broth and two cups of water into which I placed the corn cobs and let simmer for a short while.
- ¼ cup minced onion
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- ¼ cup dry white wine
- 2 ears of corn, smeared with a little butter
- 1 small bunch of cherry tomatoes on the vine, drizzled with olive oil, salt and pepper
- ¼ cup parmesan cheese
- fresh thyme and chives, minced
- fresh black pepper
- Smear the corn with the butter and place on a grill or a grill pan.
- Sear the corn a couple of minutes until you get some grill marks.
- You can skip this step since the corn will cook in the risotto, but I like the look of the grilled corn as a finishing touch.
- Scrape the corn kernels off the cob, saving some of the large pieces with grill marks to use on top.
- Set the corn kernels aside, but place the cobs in the pot with the broth or water.
- Place the cherry tomatoes on an ovenproof dish and drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper.
- Roast at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes or until tomatoes start to split open.
- Remove tomatoes from oven and set aside.
- While the tomatoes are in the oven, make the risotto.
- Melt the butter in a skillet with the olive oil.
- Add the minced onion and saute until softened.
- Add the rice and stir for a couple of minutes.
- Add the wine and stir, then add the broth, a little at a time, stirring constantly.
- When the risotto is about five minutes from being finished, add the corn kernels, setting aside the larger "planks" that you will use to garnish.
- Finish cooking the risotto with the corn addition, adding more liquid if necessary.
- Finally, add the black pepper to taste, the herbs, another tablespoon of butter and the parmesan cheese.
- Serve with the roasted tomatoes on top.