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Creamy Risotto with Chicken Sausage

I’m a sucker for risotto. It’s so creamy and homey – I call it “fancy comfort food.” I only recently discovered how EASY it is to make really good risotto! You can amend this recipe and mix in pretty much anything you want, but here’s one I’ve had a few times that always turns out well:

The Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 (16 ounce) package sweet Italian chicken sausage
  • 1 cup chopped sweet onion
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 1/4 cups Arborio rice
  • 1 cup Chardonnay or other dry white wine
  • 3 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup frozen petite sweet peas
  • 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese

The Directions

  1. In a heavy, large saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Saute sausage and onion until onion is translucent, about 3 minutes.
  2. Add garlic and thyme and cook about 30 seconds.
  3. Add rice and wine; stir until the wine is absorbed.
  4. Next, stir in 3 cups of the chicken broth. Then, lower the heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, until the broth is absorbed, stirring occasionally, for about 15 minutes. Continue adding broth, 1/4 cup at a time, stirring until all the liquid is absorbed and rice is tender and creamy. (This part I do somewhat unattended … I enjoy a glass of wine, check my email, stir the pot, flip through a magazine, stir the pot, etc …. Just keep going until it looks like what you get at a restaurant.)
  5. When the risotto is rich and creamy, stir in the frozen peas and approximately 1/4 cup of the Parmesan cheese; cook 1 minute or until heated throughout.
  6. Dish into bowls and sprinkle with the rest of the Parmesan cheese.

The first time I made this, I said to myself and my friends, “This is by far the best thing I have ever made.” It’s true.

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2 responses to “Creamy Risotto with Chicken Sausage

  1. Jen D March 23, 2011 at 4:16 am

    Regarding the chicken sausage; fully-cooked or raw in the casings? My guess was fully-cooked, but looking for confirmation. Sounds yummy! Any suggestions for the arborio rice (a particular brand)?
    Hope you’re doing well!

    • jenapproves March 23, 2011 at 4:39 am

      I use the fully cooked sausage. I actually haven’t ever seen raw chicken sausage! 🙂
      I’ve used a few different kinds if arborio rice. My favorite comes in a yellow box. I can’t remember the name of it, but the next time I go to the store, I will pay attention!

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