Bright tomato color and frank tomato taste are the reasons for this risotto’s simple, strong, summery appeal. Embark upon it only when you can get very ripe local tomatoes. Plum tomatoes are my choice because they are less watery. The tomatoes must be peeled, but I do not blanch them to pinch off the skin because I want them to be as firm as possible when I start them cooking with sautéed onion and butter. Therefore I peel them raw. (Please for a description of this technique.)
When the tomatoes have simmered a few minutes, the rice is added and they finish cooking together. The risotto becomes colored a vivid red and exudes the effusively fresh, vibrant flavor of the tomatoes.
© 1986 Marcella Hazan estate. All rights reserved.