Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Risotto and Honeyed Vegetables

Tonight I made a risotto, because I have never made one before. It turns out it is not at all difficult and not even very time consuming. Plus it was really good. You can look up recipes on line and find thousands that are all the same so I used my old standby, the Taste magazine website because I generally assume that if it comes from NZ it must be trustworthy. As always I added a couple of my own additions and then of course I needed vegetables on the side because you must always have plenty of those. Only I wanted interesting vegetables so I cooked them in honey to pander to my sweet tooth.

And so I have a had a rather good evening because I cooked and it turned out exactly as it should have, and now I will write down exactly what I did so that if anybody ever comes across this and is interested they will be able to make risotto also. Apparently it is quite important to use wine to make a real risotto and it did make it taste good although if you have none or are absolutely alcohol free I am sure you will manage just fine. What I really think is absolutely most important is to use risotto rice. You really cannot use just any rice, it won't do the same thing -  it won't get all soft and creamy. Here in Ireland, or in Galway at least, it is a little difficult to find, there is usually only one option, and it is a lot more expensive than normal rice so for now at least I think risotto will be a treat.

Simple Risotto with Chicken

3 cups chicken stock
20 grams butter
1 tablespoon oil
1 brown onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 chicken breast, chopped
220 grams/1 cup risotto rice
½ cup white wine
¼ cup parmesan
Salt and pepper

Place the stock in a large enough saucepan and bring to a simmer. Turn the heat down and keep it simmering.
Meanwhile heat the butter and oil in a large saucepan. Add the onion and garlic, stir for about 5 minutes until translucent. Add the chicken and stir until cooked.
Add the rice to the onion and stir for a couple of minutes, then add the wine. Stir constantly until the liquid has evaporated away.
Add the stock ½ cup at a time, stirring all the while and waiting for the liquid to absorb before each new addition. Cook for about 20 minutes or so, stirring to ensure that the rice does not stick to the bottom, until the risotto is thick and creamy but the rice still slightly firm.
Add the parmesan and season as needed. Remove from the heat and cover for five minutes.

Honeyed Vegetables

2 carrots and 1 cup broccoli (or whatever takes your fancy)
2 tablespoons liquid honey
1 tablespoon butter or oil
1 tablespoon sesame seeds

Chop the vegetables into lengthwise slices.
Heat the oil and honey in a large pan.
Add the vegetables and sesame seeds and stir-fry on high heat for 5-10 minutes (until the vegetables are done to your liking).


  1. What kind of chicken stock did you use? From powder or real chickens? Linda

  2. I used OXO cubes, they are easy and taste good. I did not raise chickens and then butcher them in the backyard, unlike some people I know...


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