Photo: Annabelle Breakey; Styling: Dan Becker
Total Time
1 Hour 15 Mins
Yield
Makes 6 to 8 servings as a side dish or first course

It's made the traditional way, but this risotto hits some extraordinary flavor notes, mainly because of two not-so-common risotto ingredients. One is creamy sweet mascarpone cheese. The other is carrots, slow cooked in a butter-oil bath until their sugars caramelize.

How to Make It

Step 1

Heat 1 tbsp. oil and 1 tbsp. butter over medium heat in a medium heavy-bottomed pot; add carrots and stir with a wooden spoon until well coated. Add 1/2 cup water, 1/2 tsp. salt, and the sugar; cover and cook 5 minutes, or until tender. Uncover and cook, stirring occasionally, until water evaporates and carrots are just starting to brown, a few minutes more. Reserve half of the carrots. In a blender, purée other half with 3/4 cup hot water.

Step 2

Bring chicken broth to a simmer and keep at a simmer, covered, over low heat.

Step 3

Heat remaining oil and butter over medium heat in same (unwashed) pot used for carrots. Add onion and cook until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add rice, stirring with a wooden spoon to coat rice with oil, 1 minute. Add wine and cook, stirring, until wine evaporates. Add carrot purée and cook, stirring, until mixture no longer looks soupy.

Step 4

Add 1/2 cup hot broth, stirring often, until rice absorbs most of the liquid. Repeat process, adding 1/2 cup broth at a time and stirring often till each addition is absorbed before adding the next, until rice is al dente (about 20 minutes; at least 1 cup broth will remain).

Step 5

Fold in reserved carrots (save 2 tbsp. for garnish), mascarpone, 1/4 cup parmesan, 1 tbsp. parsley, and the thyme. Add up to 1 cup broth (1/4 cup at a time) to loosen the risotto. Season with salt and white pepper to taste.

Step 6

Sprinkle each bowl of risotto with some of remaining 1/2 cup parmesan, remaining 1 tbsp. parsley, and reserved carrots. Serve immediately.

Step 7

Note: Nutritional analysis is per serving.

Chef's Notes

To make this risotto even prettier, you can cut the carrots into 1/4-in. dice (it's time-consuming, but makes the carrots look like little jewels). Mascarpone—a rich Italian-style cream cheese available at specialty, gourmet, and Whole Foods stores—can be replaced with an equal amount of heavy cream.

Ratings & Reviews

NOLACJ
June 10, 2017
Mine too- he asked for seconds!  Thanks for this comment.

Delicious Risotto

Ccrowley
June 10, 2017
Delicious- I skipped the pureeing of the carrots and used a couple tablespoons of cream instead of marscapone, but it was still amazing.

NOLACJ's Review

ellybean34
October 08, 2009
Delicious, even for "carrot haters"! This recipes tastes like a dish from a fine restaurant. Give yourself at least one hour to prepare. Believe me, it's worth it.

CheriB's Review

butle033
November 09, 2008
LOTS of work, but wow! May not be perfect for a busy weeknight, but the best thing we have done with carrots ever. Highly recommend letting the risotto rest for 5 minutes before serving.

dodroe's Review

CheriB
November 29, 2012
N/A

cammieh's Review

cammieh
May 11, 2011
This is a wonderfully easy recipe. It's a great way to use an abundance of carrots for a hearty meal. I substituted with honey goat cheese and it was nice.

Ccrowley's Review

dodroe
January 01, 2011
This was absolutely delicious and very easy. We couldn't find marscapone cheese so substituted 1/4 light cream cheese and it was amazing. GREAT and EASY recipe.

butle033's Review

TJTess
July 22, 2011
My 4 year old is very picky and she loved this! I would chop the carrots in the food processor next time.

ellybean34's Review

January 25, 2010
N/A