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The Winter Vegetable Series Part 2, Radicchio Risotto

Our contributor continues her series on Winter Vegetables with a comforting risotto made with her beloved radicchio.

Radicchio Risotto.

Radicchio Risotto.

While the month of March is known to be unpredictable — in like a lion, out like a lamb — the vegetables this time of year are, sadly, very predictable, at least here in the northeastern part of the U.S. While the days start to get longer and the glimmer of warmer weather is palpable, there’s not much fresh produce available.

And if, like me, you eat less meat or observe meatless Fridays, that can mean the same few dishes always in rotation.

But with a little creativity and direction, we can find ways to enjoy a robust and delicious March using what’s available in the vegetable section of the market.

So, with this in mind, I’m offering a series of recipes and ideas for winter vegetables in different and unexpected ways. Here is the second: Radicchio Risotto. The first was Pepperonata.

I first learned this risotto dish in Venice. I love (and I mean love) radicchio. I like to joke that if you cut me open, radicchio would come out of my veins. From the beautiful, purple color to the wonderful, slightly bitter taste, radicchio is perfect on its own with a little Parmigiano-Reggiano or even grilled.

Radicchio is technically a chicory. It is one of the healthiest types of vegetables you can eat and abundantly available in the winter.

In Italy, there are many different types of radicchio at the market; here in the U.S., we frequently have Chioggia radicchio. It’s a small, purple-magenta, round lettuce-like vegetable, and it’s most commonly used in salads.

Here, I make it as a very simple (and beautiful) radicchio risotto.

Radicchio Risotto

Radicchio Risotto

Recipe by Chiara Montalto Giannini
0.0 from 0 votes


Prep time


Cooking time




  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil (as needed)

  • 1 large 1 red onion (or 3-4 small shallots), chopped fine

  • 1 medium 1 head radicchio, chopped fine (and core removed)

  • 2/3 cup 2/3 cannaroli or arborio rice

  • Generous pour of white wine

  • 1/2 cup 1/2 Pecorino Romano

  • 1/4 cup 1/4 Parmigiano Reggiano

  • 3 cups 3 vegetable broth


  • Coat the bottom of a large pot or dutch oven with olive oil.
  • Add onion and sauté until translucent.
  • Add radicchio and sauté until wilted.
  • Add rice, and toast it (with vegetables) for 1-2 minutes.
  • Add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Take a ladle full of broth only and add it to the rice/radiccho mix.
  • Stir until it is absorbed.
  • Add another ladle full of broth and stir until it absorbed.
  • Keep doing this process of adding broth and stirring until the rice is cooked, about 15-17 minutes.
  • Add your white wine about two thirds of the way through.
  • Add your cheeses about two thirds of the way through.
  • When risotto is cooked, serve with an extra sprinkling of Parmigiano.

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