Active Time
Total Time
40 MIN
Serves : 4 to 6

Venice-based blogger Skye McAlpine doesn't add wine to this risotto; this keeps the fennel flavor pure and sweet. Swap a vegetable stock for the chicken broth if you're cooking for vegetarians. Slideshow: More Risotto Recipes

How to Make It

Step 1    

In a medium saucepan, bring the chicken broth to a simmer; keep warm. In an enameled medium cast-iron casserole, melt 4 tablespoons of the butter over moderately high heat. Add the onion and fennel, season with salt and cook over moderately high heat, stirring, until softened, about 10 minutes.

Step 2    

Add the rice and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly to coat the rice with butter. Add 1 cup of the warm stock and cook over moderately high heat, stirring constantly, until nearly absorbed. Continue adding the stock 1 cup at a time and stirring constantly until it is nearly absorbed between additions. The risotto is done when the rice is al dente and suspended in a thick, creamy sauce, about 20 minutes total. Stir in the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter, the 1 1/2 cups of cheese and the 2 tablespoons of fennel fronds. Garnish with more fennel fronds and serve immediately, passing grated cheese at the table.

Suggested Pairing

Lively, medium-bodied red.

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