Tested and Perfected by Food and Wine
Fennel Risotto with Crispy Lamb Sausage
© Johnny Miller

Fennel Risotto with Crispy Lamb Sausage

  • TOTAL TIME: 1 HR
  • SERVINGS: 4

A homemade lamb-and-fennel sausage, made with store-bought ground lamb, gets browned in a pan and served over fragrant fennel risotto.

  1. 4 cups chicken broth mixed with 4 cups of water
  2. 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  3. 1/2 small fennel bulb—cored and finely chopped
  4. 1 small shallot, minced (1/4 cup)
  5. 2 cups carnaroli or arborio rice
  6. 1/2 cup dry white wine
  7. One 1-inch-thick slice of white bread, cubed
  8. 3 tablespoons whole milk
  9. 2 cups lamb filling (from Lamb Roast with Mustard Pan Sauce recipe)
  10. 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  11. 2 ounces ricotta salata cheese, grated (1/2 cup)
  12. Kosher salt
  13. Freshly ground black pepper
  1. Bring the broth and water to a simmer; keep hot.
  2. In a saucepan, heat half of the oil. Add the fennel and shallot and cook over moderate heat until golden, 5 minutes. Stir in the rice. Add the wine and simmer, stirring, until absorbed. Add 1 cup of the hot broth and cook, stirring, until absorbed. Continue adding the broth 1 cup at a time and stirring until it is nearly absorbed before adding more. The risotto is done when the rice is tender, 20 to 25 minutes.
  3. Combine the bread and milk. Mix in the lamb filling and form into four 1-inch-thick logs. In a nonstick skillet, heat the remaining oil. Cook the sausages until browned and cooked through, 7 to 8 minutes. Slice the sausages.
  4. Stir the butter and cheese into the risotto; season with salt and pepper. Serve with the sliced sausages.

Suggested Pairing

Pair this risotto with a light red wine that won't overpower the subtle fennel flavor in the dish. A great choice: Lagrein from Italy’s northern Trentino region.