The base flavor of this heartwarming cold-weather risotto has its roots in the Venetian practice of cooking shredded Savoy and other cabbages very slowly in olive oil, garlic, and a bit of pork fat. When prepared in that manner they are called sofegae in Venetian dialect, which is to say smothered.
Although here we have an olive-oil base, I chose to complete the risotto with the mantecare technique, swirling in at the end a little butter and grated Parmesan. It pulls the dish together and gives it a gracious finish.
© 1997 Marcella Hazan estate. All rights reserved.