Sunday, September 19, 2010

Challenge: Sun-dried tomato risotto

Hello, friends!

It's been a long time. I'm sorry.

As some of you may know, I'm a graduate student, and school started for us a few weeks ago. I've been busy with beginning of semester stuff, as well as some looming program deadlines. I haven't been cooking much at all, and have been suffering mightily for it. So has Jeff, patient man that he is.

But, last night I finally cooked again. I've been meaning to try some risotto and have been reading recipes all over and decided to just go for it.

Let me say that, like so many things, it was way more intimidating than it should have been. I pulled it off quite easily. Now, my risotto may not have been perfect, but it was pretty tasty! The recipe below is my basic understanding of how you are supposed to cook risotto. I'd attribute it somewhere, but every recipe seems to say basically the same thing!

Basic Risotto
serves 2 as a main course, or 4 as an appetizer
printable recipe

1 onion, chopped
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup rice
1/4 cup water + 1 tablespoon lemon juice (or 1/2 cup wine)
4 1/2 cups chicken broth (or vegetable, or beef, or whatever)
1/2 - 1 cup vegetables (anything you want; I used about 1/2 cup of sundried tomatoes)
salt and pepper
1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
chopped fresh herbs, if desired (I used basil)

Heat the olive oil over medium heat and add the onion. Saute until translucent, then add the rice and cook for another minute or so, until the rice is less opaque. Add the water and lemon juice, and stir until it is absorbed by the rice. Add the broth in 1/2-3/4 cup increments, waiting until it is absorbed before adding more. About half-way through, consider adding the vegetables if they are firmer. If they are not, add them with some of the last broth.

When the broth is completely absorbed, test the rice. It should have a slight bite to it, but be cooked thoroughly. Think of al dente pasta. Season if necessary with salt and pepper. Stir in the parmesan cheese (as well as any fresh herbs you may be using). Serve and enjoy!

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