Sweet Mascarpone Risotto with Pomegranate Syrup
From Julie Van Rosendaal
This is essentially creamy stovetop rice pudding with a fancy name. If you like, stir a handful of fresh pomegranate seeds into the cooled risotto before serving, for crunchy, juicy bursts of flavour throughout the creamy rice.
2 c. pomegranate juice
1/2 c. sugar
a few strips of orange zest
1 T. butter
1 c. medium or short grain white rice
4 c. (1 L) whole milk, or half milk, half cream
1/2 c. sugar
2 large eggs
1 t. vanilla
1 c. mascarpone
To make the pomegranate syrup: simmer the pomegranate juice, sugar and orange zest in a small pot set over medium heat until it reduces by half. Remove the peel and cool the mixture completely – it should have the consistency of syrup. (This can be made up to a week in advance and refrigerated.)
To make the pudding: in a medium-large saucepan, heat the butter over medium-high. When it melts and the foam subsides, add the rice and stir it into the butter to coat. Stir in the milk and sugar, bring to a simmer and cook, stirring often, for about an hour, or until the rice is tender.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs and vanilla. Slowly whisk 1 c. of the hot rice mixture into the eggs, whisking constantly, then return the mixture to the pan. Cook, stirring, for another minute, then whisk in the mascarpone. Remove the risotto from the heat and let it sit for a minute or two, then stir until the mascarpone is melted and the mixture is well blended. Cool slightly and serve warm, topped with the syrup, or cool completely, then chill for up to two days before serving cold. Serve the rice pudding in small glass dishes drizzled with pomegranate syrup. Serves 6 to 8.