Category Archives: rice

Carrot and arugula risotto with roasted walnuts

Forgive the picture, but when I cook at night, the photos just don’t turn out as well as I’d like. If we were going to be here for more than a year, I’d build myself a light box or something. But for now? I’ll just tell you that this dish is worth trying, and prettier than you might think.

It’s a springtime risotto, and a weeknight take on a dish we had in NYC during restaurant week at the DB Bistro.  That version was also a risotto, and also used a sort of arugula pesto (as far as I could tell) to make the dish a vibrant green color.  Its sweetness was from butternut squash, which was appropriate for January but not quite right somehow for the start of spring.  So I improvised: I sweetened some chicken broth with a bunch of carrots and used that as the base for the dish.

This isn’t a recipe so much as a formula. I find risotto pretty easy for a weeknight meal, especially when we’re short on ingredients.  Yes, there is stirring involved, but not as much as you think … Just don’t turn up the heat too much.

** I’m on vacation at the moment, and wrote this post before I left.  Be back at the end of May with more about my trip! **

Recipe after the jump.

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Filed under carrots, main, rice, vegetarian-friendly

Disaster!

Come on, now. You know I would only post a disaster with promise.  This one starts with meyer lemons and ends in a sweet pudding, which would have been intriguing if only I could cook rice.

It all began with a mysterious package that arrived on Saturday. No note — just a meyer lemon, a massive shallot, and a bag full of jerusalem artichokes.  The leaf on the meyer lemon told me that this was FRESH, most likely from some warmer, more pleasant coast, and therefore might have something to do with my friend P’s attempt to coax me back to CA.  (Well, that and she told me the package was coming, but that wouldn’t make the story nearly as exciting, right?)

Anyway, I knew I had to do something special with the gift. Just the night before, I was reading The Spiteful Chef, and came across a post where she recommends adding condensed milk, cinnamon, and vanilla to some parboiled rice for a quick rice pudding.  I LOVE condensed milk, in a ridiculous, irrational, will eat an entire can if I’m left to my own devices kind of way. And I happened to have one on hand, along with some arborio rice, this meyer lemon, some raisins, and homemade vanilla extract.  With tea in place of stock, and the condensed milk to make things creamy and delicious, I figured it’d be the best way to stretch the meyer lemon out just a little bit.  After all, I could use the zest in the rice pudding and save the juice for something else.

And so I did. Here’s the final result:

You know what? It was tasty. The cream Earl Gray (Earl Gray with less bergamot and more vanilla) complemented the fragrant scent of the Meyer lemon, and the condensed milk made the lemon peel and raisins taste like candied goodness was sprinkled through each bite.  Unfortunately, it was also a little crunchy. Yup, that’s right — I undercooked the rice, thinking that cooking in the condensed milk would help soften things.  Boy, was I wrong. So file this under work in progress. I’ll post the recipe as I think it should be, with a note where I modified things. I’ll try this one again and update a final version when I get a chance.  In the meantime, thanks for making winter a little nicer, P!

Recipe after the jump.

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Filed under dessert, Meyer lemons, raisins, rice, tea, work in progress