Italian Regional Recipes Primi Piatti: Pasta, Rice, Soups

Goat Cheese and Orange Zest Risotto

Light and creamy, the secret to this risotto’s incredible flavour is finding the right cheese to combine with the sweet taste of the orange.

We chose goat’s cheese that retains a soft, elastic paste with an unmistakable yoghurt aftertaste and gave this risotto a rich, velvety texture that enhances the citrus fruit instead of overwhelming it.

Serves: 2 | Preparation time: 10 mins | Cooking time: 20 mins

  • Carnaroli or Arborio or Vialone rice: 180 g
  • Goat cheese: 60 g
  • Vegetable broth: 500 ml
  • Orange, with edible skin: 1
  • White onion or shallot, medium sized: 1
  • Butter, unsalted and cold: to taste
  • Chives, fresh: to taste
  • Salt and pepper: to taste


If you want to prepare the vegetable broth from scratch, you can follow this recipe: Easy Every-Day Vegetable Broth. Otherwise, a cube of vegetable broth will work just fine.

Grate the orange zest; make sure to not grate away the white part of the peel, as it is slightly bitter. Squeeze the orange and set aside both the orange zest and the juice.
Finely chop the chives and the onion. Let melt the butter in a pan and brown the onion over low heat, then add the rice and toast it for 2 to 3 minutes until becomes traslucent.

Pour in the orange juice and when it starts to simmer, start adding the broth, as well: at first pour in enough broth to cover the rice, stirring, then keep adding the broth one ladle at a time, until the rice is cooked through.

Tip: Remember to keep the broth boiling for all the time due to prevent it from stunting the rice’s cooking process.

Dice the cheese in small cubes and add about ¾ of them to the rice, along with most of the orange zest and the chives. Take off the heat, add a little piece of cold butter and stir.

Serve warm, garnishing each plate with the remaining cheese, orange zest and chives.

Tip: You can of course substitute the goat cheese with another one that suits your taste better. However, we do recommend you to refrain from using aged cheeses, as their intense and pungent taste would overpower the orange flavour.

In Italy, such risotto is prepared by using goat’s cheese or Taleggio, a semi-soft cheese made with cow milk that has a bit pungent smell yet a quite mild taste.

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