Riso al salto (Italian fried rice) is the cenerentola of Italian dishes. Made with leftover saffron risotto, this Italian fried rice was born in a famous Milan restaurant (Ristorante Savini) in the 70s, and it was served to the guests that would attend the restaurant late in the evening, after a concert in nearby theatre "La Scala". It quickly became one of the most sought after meals of the Italian elite, actors, and famous people, that would go to the Savini restaurant and order this simple, ingenious, and irresistible dish.
Take the leftover saffron risotto out of the refrigerator.TIP: this traditional Italian recipe is specifically made with leftover saffron risotto. If you make the risotto from scratch for this recipe, then you need to make it thick, and let cool down completely before cooking this dish.
On a non-stick pan, warm up 2 tbsps of olive oil. Add 3 to 4 tablespoon of the leftover saffron risotto to the pan. Keep the heat to low.
Flatten the rice to get a disc as big as the pan. The disc should be just over 1cm (0.4 inch) thick.
Without turning it, and on low heat, cook for 10 minutes on the same side. While cooking, adjust the edges of the disc with your spatula to make it perfectly round. During this stage the rice might stick to the pan. It's ok if it sticks at the beginning. At around the 3 minute mark you should try to move the rice disc around. Be gentle. It might break at this point. If it does, stick it together with your spatula. Around the 8 minute mark, you should be able to move the rice disc around the pan, without the help of your spatula.
Now it's time to flip it. Take a clean plate the size of your rice disc. Put it on top of the rice. Then keep your left hand on top of the plate, and with your right hand turn the pan around. ATTENTION: WHILE TURNING THE PAN, HOT OIL MIGHT DRIP ON YOUR ARM. To prevent this from happening, let the oil drip on a second empty plate, before you flip the pan completely. (See our video for proper technique).
Put the pan back on the heat, add 2 tbsps of olive oil, and gently slide the rice disc in from your plate. Now cook the other side for another 10 minutes. Keep the heat on low to allow for a slow and very crisp caramelization of the rice.
During the 10 minutes, make sure the rice doesn't stick to the pan. Moove it around occasionally. When the edges of the disc start to turn golden and crispy, your rice is ready.
Flip over onto a serving plate, let cool down a minute, and enjoy as a main, or as a delicious starter. The side up should be cripy, golden and heavily caramelized.
We write 4 people in the servings as we recommend this recipe as a starter, or aperitivo, to be shared with others. If you want, you can have it as a main dish on your own, as it was traditionally intended.