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History and tradition behind the Isolana risotto

Risotto all'isolana

If you are looking for a particular risotto, then let yourself be guided by this typical recipe of Verona, the risotto all’isolana.

Risotto all’isolana is a typical dish of Veronese cuisine . It was prepared for the first time back in 1967 on the occasion of the first Rice Fair in Isola della Scala , a town in the center of the Vialone Nano Veronese rice production area. Codified by Pietro Secchiati, the recipe was slightly revisited on the occasion of the fair’s fiftieth anniversary.

To the detriment of the name, the preparation of risotto all’isolana is not exactly the same as that of classic risottos, for which a sauté is provided. Here the meat , lean veal and pork loin (diced or minced), is cooked separately and added to the rice , cooked by absorption, in the middle and at the end of cooking. Probably the custom derives from the fact that this dish was prepared, a bit like the rice to the pilot , by the workers of the rice mills who did not have the time to follow the cooking. Beyond this, the rice all’isolana is truly amazing and we recommend you try it.

Risotto all'isolana
Risotto all’isolana

How to prepare risotto all’isolana with the original recipe

  1. First, cut the meat into cubes (if you are not using mince ).
  2. In a pan, heat half the butter with the rosemary and once the fat has browned, add the chopped meat.
  3. Brown over high heat, add salt and pepper and flavor with a splash of white wine .
  4. Lower the heat and let it cook for the cooking time of the rice.
  5. Pour the rice into the boiling broth , stir and wait for it to boil again.
  6. Stir again then let it cook for 15 minutes with the lid on, adjusting the flame to low.
  7. Now add half of the meat and finish cooking the rice which will be ready once all the broth has been absorbed.
  8. Add the remaining meat , stir in the remaining butter , parmesan and cinnamon and serve.

Risotto all’isolana is really special thanks above all to the addition of cinnamon. If you like this ancient cooking technique, we suggest you also try the risotto with tastasal , another typical recipe of this area where rice is the real protagonist of the tables.


Risotto all’isolana should be consumed as soon as it is done. However, if you have any leftovers, keep it in the refrigerator , well covered, for a couple of days and heat it in a pan with a knob of butter.

Riproduzione riservata © - WT

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