Friday, August 19, 2011

Dinner Tonight

Caprese Salad with homegrown tomatoes and basil and fresh mozarella,
drizzled with olive oil and balsamic and sprinkled with salt

Homemade crab and pancetta raviolis, cheese raviolis and heirloom tomatoes

garlic infused oil toasted on rustic bread slices

The sauce was garlic and oil with basil chiffonade and heirloom tomatoes
added as it was removed from the heat.

Homemade Caesar with a lime caesar dressing
(substitute lime for lemon in any caesar dressing... yummmm)

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Spanish Rice Risotto

So, I've got to admit, I'm not a huge Spanish rice fan.  I mean, it's good and all, but I won't go and do jumping jacks over it or anything.  Risotto on the other hand?  Now THAT is good rice.  While making dinner the other night I though, hmmm, if Risotto is delicious and Spanish rice could use a little help, let me try to combine the two.  The result was delicious!  Here is how I did it:

Rice:
1 1/2 cups arborio rice
1 T olive oil
1/2 finely chopped onion
1 clove crushed garlic
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cumin
a sprinkle or two or three of Cumin to taste

Broth:
6-7 cups of broth/stock (if stock, you may need more salt)
1 can tomato paste
a splash or two tequila (optional)

Finishing:
1/3 cup sour cream
1/4 cup chopped green onions
1/3 cup grated queso fresco


First, combine your stock and tomato paste and bring to a simmer.


Start the rice by lightly toasting the arborio rice with your onions and olive oil.  The rice is ready when you start to see a light brown toasty color on at least half of the grains of rice.  You will also notice the rice grains becoming slightly translucent.  Add the cumin, salt, garlic and chipotle and allow to become fragrant.




As is the case with any risotto, add the broth about 1 cup at a time, stirring upon addition and allowing to simmer uncovered until more liquid is needed.  I have included two videos below.  The first shows what the risotto should look like right after an addition of broth.  The second shows what it should look like just before more broth is added.


video

video



If, as you draw your spoon through the risotto, it falls immediately back in place, allow it to keep cooking.  If it is slow moving and allows you to see the bottom of the pan, it is time to add more broth.

Continue adding on cup of broth at a time until you have added 5 cups.  At that point, begin testing the risotto for a soft, but still al dente texture.



When your risotto has reached the desired consistency, add a bit more broth to loosen it and the sour cream once you have turned off the heat.  Put into a serving dish, preferably a large shallow dish and garnish with the cheese and green onions.  Serve!



I hope you enjoy!

P.S. If you want to make your risotto a little in advance, remove from heat when it is almost done, and allow it to sit until you are ready to serve.  Heat, add broth to bring to desired consistency, finish and serve.