Have ready a large sauté pan and a large saucepan, each able hold 2 quarts of liquid. You will also need a ladle.
In the saucepan, put the chicken stock. Heat it to just about boiling, then reduce to a simmer. You will be using the ladle to add the stock to the rice.
In the meantime, put the sauté pan on the fire, and add the butter. When the butter has melted, add the shallots. Sauté until they are translucent. Add the onions, and sauté until they are translucent. Add the mushrooms, and let them brown a bit as you sauté them.
Add the rice sauté it, stirring the whole while so that all the grains of rice are well coated with the butter mixture.
Add the glass of wine, and stir continuously until the wine has started to evaporate. You should be able to run a spoon down the center of the rice and see the pan. Reduce the heat to low.
Start adding one to two ladles of the stock at this point. The rice should be just covered with stock, not immersed.
Add the saffron threads, rubbing them in your fingers as you do.
Stir until the stock starts to evaporate, and then add more stock.
You will be stirring and adding more stock until almost all the stock is gone, and the rice is cooked through. It should have developed a nice creaminess.
Have a nice serving dish ready. Make sure that any other foods you are going to serve with the risotto area ready. Make sure everyone who is going to be eating as ready, too. If they are not, you can take the risotto off the flame and set it aside, covered and kept warm.
Put the cheese into the rice, and stir all completely, then put in a nice serving dish.
Creamy Risotto is Served
Enjoy, and remember – we wait for Risotto – Risotto does not wait for us!
You can buy Arborio rice in most supermarkets. If you absolutely must have Risotto, and no markets have Arborio rice, you can substitute medium or short-grain rice. Long grain and converted will not work. See Cooks Illustrated for more information about substitutions.