Having a terrible cold does not bode well for cooking. My palate felt off, I was congested, but somehow I still wanted to cook. I pulled open the cookbook and risotto was on the list which was perfect because the weather outside was dreary and rainy and a warm risotto sounded just brilliant. Normally, I make parmesan truffle risotto so this one was outside my comfort level. Using green onion, leeks, parsley, mint and lemon zest, this was a very “Spring” risotto but tasted great in the fall.
Making the gremolata, I chopped up parsley, mint and lemon zest and set it aside. So far, so wonderful. For the broth, it calls for chicken but you can use vegetable if desired. I cooked down the onions in the broth with mint sprigs and let it boil for twenty-minutes. As I paced around my house contemplating taking a nap or finishing this dish, I chugged some DayQuil and decided to get back to work. IF you can make a delicious risotto while ill, you know it’s a no-brainer to make. This recipe comes from America’s Test Kitchen once again and as promised, they make it easy. The techniques were a bit different than what I was used to, but this is what this is whole thing is about after all.
After the pot boiled for about twenty-minutes, I’m sure the house smelled delightful but I wouldn’t know. If you make it, please do tell. I drained the broth into a bowl and left the onion and mint springs in the colander which I mashed the flavor out of (this bit was the most fun). It wasn’t until the dogs started and I realized I spoke too soon. They began playing underneath my feet and things got precarious. I had a hot bowl of broth in my hands, some onions that I dared not drop in the sink, the arborio rice was sitting precariously on the kitchen island and the other pot on the burner that held the butter and spices needed to be tended to. “Where is my tea?” I muttered as I came on with a strong need for a drink, unfortunately wine was out of the question at this moment.
Fifteen minutes later –
Ahhhhhhh. A big sigh of relief. Everything is back on track and as it should be. I am stirring and salting and peppering and feeling very much the master of this risotto. I left out the peas because I hate them and knew I would just pick them out anyway. The best part was adding the parmesan at the end and stirring it all in together. The mint, while I thought might be overpowering, actually wasn’t at all and gave it a nice lift. I sat down in my pajamas on the sofa, each pup at my side and enjoyed this hearty bowl of rice. WIN.
Now back to bed.