Sunday, March 30, 2008

Revisiting Risotto

Over spring break, the roomie and I stopped by Seattle for a night, and went to a birthday dinner at a moderately classy Italian restaurant. Sad to say, neither of us were particularly impressed with the food... hers I was pretty sure I could have made myself, and I found my ravioli sauce kind of too much on the brothy-side.

Whoa there, look at me writing all pretnetious-y. It's because I've spent all morning reading food blogs like Chubby Hubby.


Basically, nothing in this restaurant was cheesy or tomato-ey or robust, which is really what I think Italian food should be. I reached over and tried the birthday girl's risotto, and it was watery. How can you have watery risotto? And then I was a big bitch and sat there thinking "my risotto is way better."

I haven't made my risotto in a while because it is basically carbs cooked in fat, and I'd rather not tempt myself. But that meal rekindled my interest in it, and since I actually have stuff to do for school this week, it was the perfect opportunity to procrastinate with some cooking.

See, this is why it's better for everyone that I steal pictures from random blogs. This just looks like a pile of poop. But it was delish. Regardless,

Mushroom Risotto
(feeds 2-3 ppl, depending on how much of a fatty you and your friends are)

1/3 stick of butter (1/6 of a cup?)
1 tbsp olive oil
1 shallot (thinly sliced)
1 clove of garlic (diced)
Sliced mushrooms (1/3 of a box? I used button but if you are fancy, portobello would be good)
1 cup med grain rice
1/2-1 cup dry white wine (depends on how tart you want it)
16 oz (ish) chicken stock (or vegetable I guess)
1/2 cup grated parmesan (more if you like that)
Salt n pepper

Heat the oil and melt the butter into it. Have the chicken stock heating in a diff pan. Sautee the onions and garlic (and here's a tip I learnt from Giada: put the onions in first then put the garlic on top of them so the garlic doesn't get burnt. Genius.) Season. Add mushrooms, sautee them too. Add rice, stir. Add wine, stir until all the wine is absorbed by the rice. Add a little chicken stock, stir until absorbed by rice. Repeat. Continue until rice is cooked. I checked that by taste testing, but it'll probably be cooking for about 20 minutes. Season. Watch out for the salt, coz parmesan is pretty salty too and you haven't added that yet. Turn off stove, stir in cheese. Eat. Yum.

So really, it's easy to make and only takes 1/2 an hour, but is kind of a bitch coz you have to stand there and stir. Would go well with roasted asparagus (but the Ralph's produce was tragically disappointing so we skipped that) and grilled chicken. Mostly coz I'm anal about having well rounded meals. Gotta hit every food group.

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