Place your pan on a low heat. Add the butter to the hot pan with the onion, celery, chili, thyme and a splash of olive oil. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until soft.
While your base cooks, break the cauliflower into florets and slice the stem (you should measure about 3 to 3 1/2 cups cauliflower). Bring the stock to the boil in a saucepan, turn the heat to low and add the cauliflower to the broth.
Add the rice to your pan and stir it with the onion mixture. Stir and fry the rice for a minute until it looks a bit translucent, then add the wine and keep stirring until it has been absorbed by the rice.
Add a first ladle of hot broth (with the bits of cauliflower you catch with it) to the pan. Stir once in a while. When you see that most of the liquid has been absorbed by the rice, add another ladle of broth, and so on until you’ve used most of your broth.
By now the rice should look oozy and creamy. Taste the rice to check if it’s al dente. Like pasta, it should be soft and chewy and still retain some texture. If it’s still a bit crunchy, add more broth a little at a time, tasting often to make sure it doesn’t overcook and become mushy. If you don’t have enough broth to reach the desired consistency, add boiling water.
Once the rice is done, take the pan off the heat and stir in about half your Parmigiano Reggiano cheese. Some will also stir in a knob of butter at this point but I find it unnecessary. Season with salt and pepper and taste to make sure it’s as delicious as should be.
Spoon the risotto in warm bowls, sprinkle the remaining cheese and some more freshly ground black pepper. Drizzle a few drops of your best olive oil or, if you feel super fancy, white truffle oil, as a finishing touch.
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