Monday, January 20, 2014

Tomato & Spinach Risotto

Courtesy of Martin Luther King, Jr., I hope many of you are enjoying a day off from work right now! We spent the weekend catching up with friends we see far too infrequently! On Saturday, KK and I caught dinner with my old roommate (counting time in college, we lived together for almost 8 years!) and her boyfriend in Hoboken.  Thanks to Groupon, we had $21 off our dinner at Sushi House.  It was a great evening catching up!  On Sunday, I met a friend/former coworker for dinner at Eataly.  It was surprisingly crowded for a Sunday evening, presumably due to others also enjoying the long weekend, but we were happy to sip on glasses of wine at La Piazza as we waited for our table at La Pizza & La Pasta.  After heading back to Hoboken, I met up with KK and his friends who had spent the afternoon/evening watching football at Village Pourhouse.  Thankfully, we were able to sleep in today.  Right now, we're watching The Price is Right, even though it just isn't the same without Bob Barker. After the show's over, I'll head to the gym so I can preemptively work off the Thai-Style Chicken Flatbreads that I'm making for dinner tonight!

Although I don’t make it often (here and here), I do love risotto.  The second link is especially interesting because it’s oven-baked risotto, not the traditional type like this meal which requires constant stirring.  Nevertheless, the smooth, creamy, cheesy consistency is so warming and it’s perfect to serve as a main course in the wintertime.  Serve this risotto as a side dish, or with chicken, or remove the chicken entirely and use vegetable broth to make it suitable for vegetarians.  The key to risotto is to stir.  And stir.  And stir.  Whatever you do – don’t let the broth be fully absorbed by the rice before adding more liquid; if that happens, you’re risotto will not reach its full state of creaminess.  Risotto is also best consumed as soon as it’s removed from the heat.  It will continue to cook in its own heat, so it becomes dry and overly mushy as it sits.  The juices from the tomatoes, spinach, and cooked chicken added to the creaminess of this dish, which is why I think I liked it even more than some of the other risottos I’ve tried in the past.  I promise the effort from all of your stirring is worth it – this risotto was delicious and will absolutely be repeated in the near future!

Tomato & Spinach Risotto
Adapted from Iowa Girl Eats
Time: 35 minutes
Serves: 2

2 ½ cups chicken broth
1 Tbsp butter
1 small onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
Salt & pepper, to taste
1 tsp olive oil
1 lb. chicken breast, cut into 1-in cubes
¾ cup Arborio rice
¼ cup sherry or dry white wine
2 tomatoes, seeded and chopped
3 oz. baby spinach
1 tsp dried basil
¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese

1. Bring chicken broth to a boil in a small saucepan. Reduce heat to low, cover and keep warm.

2. Melt butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat.  Add onion, season with salt and pepper, and sauté until onion begins to brown, 3-5 minutes.  Add garlic and sauté for 30 seconds.

3. Meanwhile, heat olive oil in another large nonstick skillet.  Cook chicken thoroughly, stirring occasionally, 8-10 minutes.

4. As chicken cooks, begin cooking risotto.  Add rice to skillet with onions, coating rice with the butter.  Pour in wine and stir until nearly absorbed by rice. Add ½ cup chicken broth, stirring continuously until broth is absorbed. Continue adding broth to the rice mixture in ½ cup increments, stirring constantly until liquid is nearly absorbed before adding more.

5. When there is 1 cup of broth left (after three pours), add tomatoes and continue stirring.  Add baby spinach and basil when pouring the last ½ cup chicken broth over the rice.  Continue stirring until liquid is almost absorbed and spinach wilts.  Stir in Parmesan cheese and cooked chicken; season with salt and pepper.  Serve immediately.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...