Heat olive oil in a small pot. Add garlic and bay leaf and sautee until fragrant.
In a separate bowl, gently crush the tomatoes by hand, then add them to the pot.
Bring the boil then reduce to a simmer for 40 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Season with salt and pepper and add basil.
Heat olive oil in a medium pot. Add onion and bayleaf and sautee until the onion is translucent.
In a separate pot, bring the vegetable stock to the boil.
Add the risotto rice to the onion, turn the heat up and stir until the rice is hot, being careful not to burn the sides. The rice will make a cracking sound when ready.
Using one ladle at a time, slowly add the boiling stock to the rice. Stir every 30 seconds – 1 minute. Once the stock as been absorbed, add another ladle of stock.
Once the risotto has absorbed all the liquid, it should be creamy and almost dry.
Tear the mozzarella into chunks and add to the risotto with butter and parmesan.
Add 3 ladles of Napoli sauce and 3/4 bunch of basil.
Stir continuously until the risotto is luscious and creamy.
Place risotto into serving bowls and drizzle with a little bit of good quality reduced balsamic.
Chef’s Tip: Make sure you stir the risotto until it is creamy. If your arms don’t hurt after making a risotto, you haven’t made it correctly.
Recipe courtesy of Tutto Bene.