CUTTLEFISH BLACK INK RISOTTO
Cuttlefish is a cephalopod that lives along the Atlantic Ocean, the North and Mediterranean Sea. It is also common in the Adriatic Sea, especially in the northern part. Cuttlefish is predator that feeds mostly on small fish and crabs and becouse of it it has very tasty meat. The most famous cuttlefish dish is black risotto, dish that was, in the past, “poor man’s food”. How was that acctually possible? Well, when they caught cuttlefisch they would make white risotto with fresh cutlefish meat and leave cuttlefish ink for the times when cuttlefish wouldn’t be availible. Then they would make black risotto with ink only.
One more thing, if you are not catching cuttlefish before sunset or at dawn at your pier then you will have to buy it. Choose those that are not pale, cuttlefish have gray color and if that color is not visible and it is pale that means it is not fresh.
250g of cuttlefish
1 large purple onion
100g of rice (for risotto, uncooked)
3 cloves of garlic
1tsp of salt
100mL of exra virgin olive oil
200mL of white wine
2 bay leaves
1 small rosemary branch
100g of fresh parsley root, chopped
1 tsp of dry basil
400mL of fish stock (or vegetable stock)
1/2 tsp of black pepper
- Clean and dice cuttlefish, ink save for later. If you bought already cleaned and diced cuttlefish and black ink than your job will be much easier.
- In wide pot add olive oil. Heat it up and then add diced purple onion. Add 1 tsp of salt and parsley root, saute for 6 – 7 minutes.
- After 6-7 minutes add cuttlefish, cleaned and diced at similar size pieces. Saute for 2-3 minutes. After that add 200mL of white wine.
- Add garlic (diced), rosemary, bay leaves, black pepper and basil. Saute for 5-6 minutes until liquid evaporates almost entirely.
- Again add olive oil (cca. 2 tbsp) and on top of it 100g of rice. Saute for 2-3 minutes until rice becomes glassy. Do not over fry rice until it becomes brown, it will not be able to release starch and it will be too crunchy.
- Add fish stock (or vegetable stock) but not everything at once. Add 100ml at the time, saute until evaporates and then add again aprox. same amount.
- Before you add last batch of fish stock, add black cuttlefish ink. You can add ink it self or you can add it in original cuttlefish “ink bag”. After you added ink, add remaining fish stock and saute for 5 minutes.
- After 5 minutes, cover it with lid and let it rest for 5 minutes. Serve while warm, and for decoration you can add cherry tomatoes, parsley leaves and grana padano cheese. Enjoy!