Volcotto is a little known dish that is essentially a risotto shaped like a volcano. There are three main components to the dish, a mushroom risotto, sweet potato purée and cherry tomato sauce. If you are thinking, like a masterchef judge, that these ingredients don't belong on the same plate, you'd be right, but it does look pretty fantastic. Although if this dish was on masterchef the more likely response would be- 'why the fuck are you making food that looks like a volcano this is ridiculous'. But if like me and Isaac you have too much time on your hands then here's how you can make the dish.
(it should be noted that a risotto is best made in one go, don't make half then realised you have to go and see Joanna Newsom and then come back and complete at midnight. Having said this, if you do get a chance see Joanna go, she's definitely worth ruining a risotto for)
-1 clove garlic
-mushrooms (around a punnet, portobello are probably best but any will do)
-white wine, approx a glass
Lightly fry the finely chopped onion and garlic in olive oil, when they are soft add the mushrooms. Add the risotto rice and coat in the oil, add a couple of ladle fulls of stock and the pepper and thyme. As the stock gets absorbed add more, add the wine towards the end of the cooking time.
Sweet potato purée
Bake 2 sweet potatoes in foil for around 45 minuets. When cooked remove the skin and mash with olive oil and some cinnamon.
Cherry Tomato Sauce
Finely chop two cloves garlic and fry lightly in olive oil. Add halved cherry tomatoes, use about a punnet. Season with thyme, sugar and salt. Cover and cook until it's a sauce.
To assemble- shape your risotto in a big mound with a small caldera (making a magma chamber is not necessary). Spoon on the sweet potato purée in a lava like fashion, pour on the tomato sauce, this should be fairly runny so it will be harder to control. Finish with toasted pine nuts.
Chef and Visionary- Augusta Ward
Volcano Architect and Lava Art Director- Isaac Crompton