Roasted Tomato Risotto
2 pounds ripe tomatoes, beefsteak or heirloom, halved and seeded
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon thyme leaves
3 garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 ½ quarts chicken stock
6 slices of bacon cut into ¼ inch slivers
½ cup minced onion
1 pound Arborio rice
½ cup dry white wine
3 tablespoons heavy cream
1 cup Parmigiano Reggiano
½ cup basil, chiffonade
3 tablespoons minced chives
Preheat the oven to 400F.
Put the tomatoes cut side down, in a small roasting pan or a cookie sheet. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil, scatter the thyme and garlic slices over them. Season generously with salt and pepper.
Roast the tomatoes in the oven until softened and fragrant, approximately 12 to 15 minutes. Remove them from the oven and them aside to cool a bit. When they are cool enough to handle, remove the skins, they should slip off easily, and transfer the tomatoes to a bowl, alongside any juices that have accumulated in the pan. Set aside.
When the tomatoes are cooling, pour the chicken stock into a saucepan and bring it to a simmer. Keep the stock at a low simmer.
In a large heavy-bottomed saucepan heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat. Add the bacon and sauté until lightly browned 4 minutes. Add the onions and cook, stirring, until softened but not browned, 6 minutes.
Add the minced garlic and cook until fragrant, approximately 2 more minutes. Add the rice and sauté until all the grains are coated and glossy. Add the wine and cook stirring until it is almost completely absorbed in 3 minutes.
Add about 1 cup of the simmering stock to the rice. Cook for about 2 minutes, stirring ofte until the stock is almost absorbed. Gradually add more stock, a cup at the time, stirring gently until it is absorbed by the rice before adding the next cup.
After about 15 minutes, begin testing the rice and adding the stock in smaller quantities. The rice should be firm yet cooked through in 18 to 20 minutes total. When the risotto is done, it will be creamy but still firm to the bite.
Stir the tomatoes into the risotto. Then stir in the cream and 1 cup of Parmigiano. Taste and season with salt and pepper to your liking. Stir for another minute then stir in the basil and chives.
Spoon the risotto into deep pasta bowls and serve with extra cheese on the side.