To Blanch and Easily Peel the Pearl Onions
First, peel your pearl onions like a pro! Bring a small pot of water to a rolling boil and blanch 8 pearl onions for 30 seconds. Quickly remove the onions and place them in a bowl of cold water for about a minute. Remove them, slice the top and bottom, and the skin will easily peel right off.
For the Risotto
Once 8 pearl onions are peeled and the tops and bottoms sliced off, slice them in half. Set aside. Slice 8 oz. of baby bella mushrooms in quarters. Set aside. Grate 8 oz. of fresh parmesan. Set aside. Warm 3½ cups of beef broth in a medium pot over a LOW flame.
While the broth heats, add 1 tbsp. olive oil to a large pot and place pear onions face down. Sear onions on HIGH heat for 4-5 minutes, without turning them over or touching them. Once they have a nice dark sear, flip them and allow them to sauté for another 3 minutes, and remove them from the pot.
Add 2 tbsp. olive oil to the pot with sliced mushrooms, and stir them around with a spoon to coat them. Flip them over to ensure that a flat side of each mushroom is face-down on the pan before turning on heat. Turn heat to HIGH, and sear them for 7 minutes without touching or flipping them. Then stir them around with a spoon, and allow them to sauté for 3-4 more minutes. Remove from pan.
Add 1 tbsp. olive oil to the pot and add 8 oz. Arborio rice. Stir and shake the rice around until it’s evenly covering the bottom. Turn heat to MEDIUM, and toast the rice for 2 minutes. Ladle in 1 cup of broth, stirring rice constantly until completely absorbed. Then ladle ½ cup, stir, allow to absorb and repeat.
When you have just ½ cup of broth left, turn off the heat under the broth (you’ll add this last half- cup later), and add your mushrooms and onions to the rice. Stir and allow it to absorb. Once broth is absorbed, add the grated parmesan and stir until melted and creamy.
To serve risotto perfectly cooked through, and not al dente, Add last ½ cup of broth, stir for 1-2 minutes until just about absorbed, then turn off heat. Place a lid on top of the pot and allow it to sit for 10-15 minutes. Give it a nice stir, salt and pepper to taste and serve.
This recipe is NOT for al dente risotto. It’s for evenly, thoroughly cooked risotto. To make your risotto al dente, simply use only 3 cups of broth instead of 3½ cups, and don’t do the last step.