Risotto with Artichokes & Italian Sausage

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


Appears in

Falling Cloudberries

By Tessa Kiros

Published 2004

  • About

It is simple to throw together a broth — just put some water on to boil with a carrot and onion, celery and peppercorns. Add a bit more water than the recipe calls for and boil it up for at least half an hour. A broth adds depth to a risotto; however, you can also use water.


  • juice of half a lemon
  • 2 artichokes
  • 1–1.25 litres (4–6 cups) hot vegetable broth
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 30 g (1 oz) butter, plus 1 teaspoon
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 2 italian sausages (about 85 g/3 oz each), skin removed and meat crumbled
  • 2 garlic cloves, lightly crushed
  • a couple of thyme or tarragon sprigs
  • 250 g (9 oz) arborio rice
  • 30 g (1 oz) grated parmesan cheese, plus extra to serve


Run a bowl of cold water and add the lemon juice. Trim the artichokes of their tough outer leaves. Chop off about a third of the top spear. Cut off the stem, leaving about 3 cm (about 1 inch). Trim away the dark outer stem. Cut the artichokes in half vertically and scrape out the chokes. Slice each one into 8 or 9 thin slices and put them in the lemon water.

Put the vegetable broth or water in a saucepan, cover and bring to a simmer. Keep at simmering point while you make the risotto.

Heat the olive oil with the teaspoon of butter in a wide heavy-based saucepan or a frying pan with high sides. Sauté the onion until golden and then add the crumbled sausage. Continue cooking until golden, stirring often so it doesn’t stick. Add the garlic, drained artichokes and the sprigs of thyme or tarragon. Sauté until the artichokes are slightly softened and lightly golden.

Add the rice to the pan, stir well and season with salt and pepper. Add about 1 cup (250 ml) of the hot broth or water, lower the heat to a simmer and cook, stirring often, until almost all the liquid has evaporated. Add more liquid and continue cooking, stirring regularly and adding more liquid as it is absorbed, for about 20 minutes, or until the rice is tender. The risotto should still have some liquid and the rice grains should be firm yet soft and creamy. Stir in the butter and cheese and serve immediately with extra parmesan.