Risoni with Saffron and Lemon

Here is the risoni recipe that caught my eye and was the impetus for the osso buco.  It was a lovely accompaniment.  Something so familiar, yet so different…

As I previously mentioned, it is from Belinda Jeffrey’s The Country Cookbook seasonal jottings and recipes.  Belinda advises she got the idea from Geraldine Holt’s Complete Book of Herbs so if you have that book (I don’t), you would have the original.  If anyone does, I would love to see the original recipe.


  • 2 pinches of saffron
  • 30g butter
  • 1 heaped tbs onion, very finely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, very finely chopped
  • 160ml cream
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 500g risoni
  • salt and black pepper
  • finely grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 2 tbs (40 ml) lemon juice or to taste
  1. Bring a large saucepan of water to the boil, add a pinch of salt.
  2. Add the risoni to the boiling water.  Cook for about 4 minutes then drain, reserving the cooking water.
  3. Put the saffron threads in a small oven-proof dish.  Put them in the oven for 3 minutes or so then pour 2 tbs boiling water over the saffron; set aside. (I wasn’t convinced putting the saffron in the oven was necessary but I did it because I had the oven on, cooking the osso buco. If you don’t have the oven on, I would just soak them a little longer in the water.)
  4. Melt the butter in a large sauté pan.
  5. Add the onion and garlic and cook until they are tender and translucent (about 4 minutes).
  6. Add the saffron mixture, cream and bay leaves.  Cook gently for 3 minutes, stirring often.
  7. Add the drained risoni to the sauté pan and cook for another 4-5 minutes, adding small amounts of the cooking fluid as the mixture absorbs it and starts to look a bit dry.
  8. When risoni is tender, add the salt, pepper, lemon zest and lemon juice.
  9. Serve risoni with osso buco.  Here is the link for the osso buco recipe.


1 thought on “Risoni with Saffron and Lemon

  1. Pingback: A sort of Osso Buco | Passion Fruit Garden

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