Risotto with Lemons and Mascarpone Cheese

Making risotto is a Sunday afternoon operation unless you are preparing for a dinner party.

Serves: 6Hands-on: 40 minutesTotal: 40 minutesDifficulty: Medium

Serves: 6


  • 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
  • ½ Meyer lemon or ¼ regular lemon, peeled, seeded, and chopped
  • 1½ cups Italian short-grain Arborio rice
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 Tbsp. red pepper flakes
  • ½ cup chopped basil
  • 5 cups chicken broth
  • 3 Tbsp. mascarpone cheese
  • 2 tsp. grated lemon zest


  • Heat the butter in a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat. Sauté the lemon pieces quickly and add the rice. Stir to coat. Add the salt, pepper, and basil. Stir in the broth ½ cup at a time. Add more broth as the rice absorbs the liquid.
  • As soon as the liquid is absorbed, add another ½ cup of hot broth. When all of the broth is absorbed, remove the lemon pieces. Stir in the mascarpone cheese and top with lemon zest.