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Sweet Vanilla Risotto with Poached Peaches and Chocolate


This sweet vanilla risotto is the perfect way to use up left over rice.

  • Serves: 6 |
    6 servings
  • Difficulty:

  • Prep Time : 25 mins |
  • Cook Time : 20 mins
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  • 6 ripe peaches, halved and stones removed
  • 6 Tbsp (90 ml) castor sugar
  • ½ quill of cinnamon
  • zest and juice of 1 orange
  • 85 g butter
  • 2 pods vanilla
  • 325 g risotto rice (Arborio is best for this dish)
  • 1 wineglass of white wine
  • 4 cups (1 litre) full-cream milk
  • 100 g best quality white chocolate, grated
  • 100 g best quality dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids)
  • handful of fresh mint, leaves picked

Place the peaches in a small saucepan with 4 Tbsp (60 ml) sugar, the cinnamon, and the orange zest and juice. Cover with a lid and simmer slowly for 10–15 minutes. The peaches should be soft but still hold their shape. Remove from the heat and put to one side.

In an appropriately sized high-sided, thick-bottomed saucepan with a lid, slowly melt two-thirds of the butter.

Score down the length of the vanilla pods and remove the fragrant seeds by scraping a knife down the inside of each half. Add the seeds to the butter and stir. Continue to cook for 1 minute before adding the rice and the remaining sugar. Turn the heat up to medium, stir the rice, and add the wine, continuing to stir until it has almost cooked away.

Now add the milk, little by little. Keep the rice on a slow but constant simmer for about 15 minutes and stir continuously. In this way the starch is massaged out of the rice, and will give you a silky, creamy end product – with classic Italian risotto texture.

When the rice has cooked through (each grain should be creamy on the outside and firm in the middle), you may need to add a little more milk to adjust the consistency. Remove from the heat and add the grated white chocolate and the rest of the butter, gently stirring it into the mixture. Place the lid on top, and leave for 3 minutes.

Discard the cinnamon quill, and take the peaches to the table with a block of dark chocolate snapped into small pieces.

Spoon the risotto onto plates and push a couple of pieces of dark chocolate into the middle of each helping.

Gently tear the peaches and place some on each plate, then drizzle the risotto with some of the syrupy juice. Top with mint.