KO’s Risoni-Rice is a recipe I learned from my parents-in-law over 30 years ago. My parents-in-law were born and raised as Greeks in Constantinople/Istanbul. Living in a cosmopolitan, multi-cultural city and immersed in the cuisines of many, influenced their kitchen and that of others residing in that great city. This neverending fusion of many co-existing cuisines over aeons has been termed politiki kouzina – food of the πόλη/city – although I prefer to interpret that phrase as ‘cross-cultural cuisine.’ The flavour of this rice is elevated by the fried and browned risoni, which imparts a subtle spicy, sweetness to the rice, as well as a lovely texture. It serves well as a beautiful side dish to any of your grilled, stewed or baked main dishes. Make it now and enjoy this slightly sweet twist to your basic rice.


2/3 cup risoni rice-shaped pasta, also called ‘orzo’
1/4 cup olive oil extra virgin
2 cups rice medium grain
4 cups water
2 teaspoons salt



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Preparing the Risoni-Rice

  1. Add the risoni and olive oil to a pot

  2. Stirring frequently, brown the risoni on medium heat

  3. Once the risoni has browned, immediately add the rice and stir through

  4. Add the water and salt to the pot and stir through a few times until it comes to a boil (this prevents the rice from clumping and cooking unevenly)

  5. Reduce the heat to low for a gentle simmer and place a vented lid on the pot

  6. Cook until all the water has been absorbed

  7. Take the pot off the heat and place a tea-towel between the pot and the lid

  8. Allow the risoni-rice to rest for 10 minutes before serving

Serving the Risoni-Rice

  1. Serve the risoni-rice as a side dish to any stew, baked or grilled main or enjoy as a dish on its own, served with a sprinkling of feta or a decadent dollop of natural Greek yoghurt

  2. For a complete KO meal, serve it with Greek meatballsGreek salad and tzatziki


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