Risotto has been on my list of basics to try for quite some time.
It’s just something I’ve never seemed to get around to.
Risotto isn’t a dish that you can just whip up in a matter of minutes. No, it involves a more lengthy process that requires a real-time commitment.
I think that time thing intimidated me.
I’m proud to say that this is no longer so, thanks to a book club.
I’m reading the book, Bread and Wine by Shauna Niequist, with a small group of women this summer.
It’s a fabulous book, full of thoughtful narratives, satisfying recipes and mentioned as, “… a celebration of food shared, reminding readers of the joy found in a life around the table. It’s about the ways God teaches and nourishes people as they nourish the people around them.”
Each week we read a section of the book and then choose a recipe from that section to create and share with the group.
The very first week I volunteered to make the basic risotto.
I was having a bad day the day I was to make it and my hubs could tell, so in a sweet act of love, he offered to help.
We chopped onion (using a lot more than I ever would’ve thought), crushed garlic, listened to hot oil sizzle as rice browned, poured cup after cup of broth into the big pot and stirred, stirred, stirred.
You may be able to tell from these pictures that things may have gotten a little crazy in the kitchen. Ahem, the onion hanging out on the green teapot and me standing like a flamingo in order to give the legs a break!
I knew we were creating something delicious though because the smell that wafted through our house was heavenly.
I was so jazzed to finally be making my very own risotto from scratch. I was just hoping it would (please, please!) turn out.
The good news, it did!
Grains of rice were cooked to perfection, rich and creamy. Each serving topped with a generous sprinkling of parmesan cheese and fresh herbs.
This dish was a big hit with the book club, all the ladies loved it.
I’m looking forward to creating another batch real soon, and adding some additional ingredients to the mix to make it all the more amazing.
(Recipe taken and adapted from Bread and Wine)
21/2 T olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 large onion, chopped
2 c arborio rice
1 c white wine
3 cubes chicken bouillon
5 1/2 c water
1/8-1/4 c parmesan cheese
salt and pepper to taste
Place cubes of bouillon and water in a medium saucepan on the stove top. Bring to a boil until bouillon has dissolved into the water. Reduce heat to very low.
Place olive oil and onions into dutch oven, or large pot, on the stove top. Cook on medium heat for about 5 minutes or until onions are soft. Add garlic and cook for another 2 minutes.
Throw in the rice (it may sizzle and pop) and stir using a wooden spoon, so that all of the rice is covered in oil. Add wine and stir. Let cook for about 5 minutes to soften the rice, and so most of the wine is absorbed. Add a cup of broth and stir, stir, stir.
Continue to add a cup of broth about every 7 minutes and stir, stir, stir (As you do this, you want to keep the rice from either drowning in liquid or from drying out so you really have to be present to the process, standing over the stove, stirring for 30-35 minutes).
Add parmesan cheese and salt and pepper to taste.
**I purchased arborio rice at Trader Joe’s.
**Make sure you taste along the way, multiple times, so you don’t over cook the rice. You want to rice to have a soft crunch to it at the end, and if it does, this means you’ve cooked to al dente which is just perfect.