Sweetcorn Risotto with Hazelnuts and Sage

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Step 1.

First off let’s prepare the sweetcorn (skip this step if using tinned). If it still has the outer leaves, strip these off and then cook in boiling water for 5 mins until the kernels are soft to a fork tip.

Step 2.

Drain and once cool enough to handle, stand the sweetcorn on its end and use a knife to cut the kernels from the cob. Set aside.

Step 3.

Finely dice the onion. Place a large pan over a medium heat, add the butter and when it foams, add the onion, the sweetcorn, a few chopped sage leaves and a pinch of salt.

Step 4.

Cook gently for 7 or 8 mins until the onion is soft and golden. Add the rice and cook for another 2 mins until it’s well coated in the butter and the edges have gone slightly translucent.

Step 5.

Pour in the wine, stir and let it bubble until almost completely evaporated.

Step 6.

Now add the stock a ladleful at a time, stirring until each ladle is absorbed before adding another. This should take between 15 and 20 mins.

Step 7.

Meanwhile, roughly chop the hazelnuts and lightly toast in a pan. Set aside.

Step 8.

Pick the rest of the sage leaves and fry them in a good slug of olive oil until crispy. Set aside on kitchen paper.

Step 9.

Once all of the stock has been used up, the rice should be cooked through but still have a little ‘bite’ to it - think al dente pasta. At this point, remove from the heat, add the grated cheese, most of the hazelnuts (leave a few to go on top) stir well and cover with a lid. Leave to rest for 5 mins.

Step 10.

Plate up the risotto, top with crispy sage leaves and a drizzle of the olive oil you fried them in.

Although best with fresh in-season sweetcorn, I’ve tested this with the tinned stuff and it works well too.

2 Corn on the Cob (or 1 300g Tin)
1 Large Onion
50g Butter
300g Risotto Rice
1 Large Glass of White Wine
1.5l Vegetable Stock
75g Hazelnuts
100g Grana Padana (or Parmesan)
1 Bunch of Sage