Summer Risotto

Jul 19th

I’ve been seriously jonesin’ for risotto lately, which is strange because I almost never make it. Comfort food for dinner tonight!

Risotto is the finished dish, made with arborio rice. It’s a short, fat Italian grain of rice that gets creamy when it’s cooked. Everyone always thinks risotto is so “rich”, like it’s made with cream or lots of butter. Not so! It’s the rice itself that makes it seem so decadent. It’s actually really easy to make; this recipe is basic and made with what I had in my fridge. I loved the end result which is why I’m sharing it, but feel free to sub in veggies you may like better.

Also, all rice triples when cooked; if you have 1 c. of rice, you will need 3 c. of liquid and you will have 3 c. rice in the end. For risotto it’s no different! Use the same ratio depending on how much you want to make.

Summer Risotto: Serves 2 as a main course, 3 as a side dish

3 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil, divided

1 yellow squash, sliced in half lengthwise and chopped

1/2 lb. asparagus (about 8 spears), chopped into 1 in. pieces

1/4 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. black pepper, divided

1/4 tsp. garlic powder

1 c. arborio rice

3 c. chicken broth, heated

1/2 c. freshly grated Parmesan cheese

1. Heat 1 tbsp. olive oil in large dutch oven or sauce pan.

2. Saute squash and asparagus over medium heat, sprinkling with salt, garlic powder, and 1/8th tsp of the pepper.

3. When vegetables are softened and starting to lightly brown, remove to a bowl.

We love the brown stuff on the bottom of the pan. It’s called flavor, people.

4. Add 2 tbsp. olive oil to pan and keep the heat at medium. Add rice and stir until evenly coated in oil. Stir and let cook for several minutes.

5. Heat broth; add about 1/2 c. broth to rice and stir frequently until liquid is almost totally absorbed.

6. Add broth in 1/2 c. increments, stirring frequently, adding broth only when initial 1/2 c. has been absorbed.

Any “flavor” on the bottom of the pan should be scraped up with a wooden spoon after you add the broth. That’s the dark spots there.

When the spoon leaves a trail of pan behind it, you’re ready to add more broth.

7. When the last addition of broth is almost absorbed, add vegetables back along with cheese and remaining pepper. Stir and serve.

*Risotto needs to be served almost immediately or it gets clumpy and sticky instead of glossy and delicious.

Summer Risotto: Serves 2 as a main course, 3 as a side dish

3 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil, divided

1 yellow squash, sliced in half lengthwise and chopped

1/2 lb. asparagus (about 8 spears), cut into 1 in. pieces

1/4 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. black pepper, divided

1/4 tsp. garlic powder

1 c. arborio rice

3 c. chicken broth, heated

1/2 c. freshly grated Parmesan cheese

1. Heat 1 tbsp. olive oil in large dutch oven or sauce pan.

2. Saute squash and asparagus over medium heat, sprinkling with salt, garlic powder, and 1/8th tsp of the pepper.

3. When vegetables are softened and starting to lightly brown, remove to a bowl.

4. Add 2 tbsp. olive oil to pan and keep the heat at medium. Add rice and stir until evenly coated in oil. Stir and let cook for several minutes.

5. Heat broth; add about 1/2 c. broth to rice and stir frequently until liquid is almost totally absorbed.

6. Add broth in 1/2 c. increments, stirring frequently, adding broth only when initial 1/2 c. has been absorbed.

7. When the last addition of broth is almost absorbed, add vegetables back along with cheese. Stir and serve.

*Risotto needs to be served almost immediately or it gets clumpy and sticky instead of glossy and delicious.