Champagne Toast to the New Year + Champagne Risotto

Ali Hedin | Champagne New Year

Is champagne ubiquitous for New Year’s just because it’s bubbly and festive? I hadn’t really thought of it before, but it must be, right? I love a good glass of champagne but I didn't know that until I actually ever had a glass of Dom Perignon. I was 22 so it’s not like I had to wait forever to get a decent glass of bubbles. Before that I’d had a glass of Cooks. Ok, possibly a bottle. But even typing that right now gave me a headache. Good champagne makes the world of difference.

Good champagne is really remarkable. Like life changing. Good champagne is so worth the money. Just don’t waste it on people who don’t like it. And don’t mix the good stuff. If you’re going to make it into a cocktail, then buy prosecco - same flavor profile, similar taste, not all of the sugar of cheap champagne, and WAY cheaper.

Ali Hedin | Champagne New Year
Ali Hedin | Champagne New Year
Ali Hedin | Champagne New Year
Ali Hedin Champagne Risotto


serves 4

1 shallot, chopped

1 clove garlic, chopped

½ cup butter, divided

¼ lb chanterelle mushrooms

2 tbs olive oil

2 cup Arborio rice

2 cup champagne

4 cups room temperature seafood stock

½ cup parmesan cheese

salt and pepper

8 large sea scallops



In a medium saucepan, heat 2 tbs butter & 2 tbs olive oil. Cook mushrooms over medium heat until tender.  Remove from the pan and set aside. (5 mins)



In the same pan, melt another 2 tbs olive oil with 2 tbs butter.  Cook shallot and garlic until softened (4 mins)



Stir Arborio rice into the pan and stir until all of the kernels are coated in oil.



Pour in one cup of champagne and stir constantly to deglaze the bottom of the pan.  When most of the champagne has evaporated, add the second cup and stir until that liquid has evaporated.



Pour in one cup of stock and stir until completely incorporated. When most of the stock has dissolved, add another cup of stock.  Continue until all of the stock has been added.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.



Remove from heat and stir in mushrooms, remaining butter and parmesan cheese.  



Bring a dry skillet to high heat.  Pat the scallops dry and season with salt and pepper.  Melt 2 tbs butter in the pan and place the scallops into the melted butter.  


Cook 1-2 minutes until browned.  Flip and cook 2 minutes on the other side.  Scallops are properly cooked when slightly firm to the touch.  



Ali Hedin | Champagne New Year
Ali Hedin | Champagne New Year
Ali Hedin | Champagne New Year