Garden Risotto. Sounds fancy right? It may sound gourmet, but it actually super simple and very versatile. Risotto is another one of those meals that may seem overly complicated, but when all said and done, is really nothing more than rice cooked with broth. Yes, it truly is that easy. Basic risotto is a snap to make and, once mastered, you can throw in any extra veggies, herbs, or protein that you have lying around. Heck, we just bought what was on sale this week (veggies and herbs. yeah!) and made the risotto to fit.
If you really want to impress someone (or several someones) with your culinary skills, risotto is the ticket. It is easy to make and it shows off well. Plus, it is incredibly forgiving. You really can’t screw it up. Oh, and if you are cooking for a crowd, you are in luck. This recipe made approximately 4-6 servings.
Adapted from Garden Risotto by Ellie Krieger (Kate loves her because she is a dietitian who makes GREAT Food).
- 8 cups low-sodium vegetable or chicken broth
- 3 teaspoons olive oil, divided
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 1/2 cups Arborio Rice
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 cup sliced mushrooms
- 3 lightly packed cups baby spinach leaves
- 1 cup frozen peas
- 1/2 pound asparagus, steamed and cut into 3/4-inch pieces (we used frozen because fresh was too expensive this week)
- 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan
- 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
- Handful parsley, chopped
- 2 tablespoons thyme, chopped
1. Bring the broth to a simmer in a medium saucepan.
2. Saute the mushrooms in a teaspoon of olive oil. Set aside.
3. Heat the remaining oil in a heavy saucepan over medium-low heat and cook the garlic and onion, stirring occasionally, until soft, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the rice and cook, stirring constantly (about 1 minute) until the rice is opaque. Add the wine and simmer, stirring constantly, until absorbed (about 1 minute).
4. Add 3/4 cup of the hot broth, the salt and a few grinds of fresh pepper and simmer, stirring constantly, until the broth is absorbed. Continue simmering and adding hot broth, about 3/4 cup at a time, stirring constantly and allowing the broth to be absorbed before adding more, until rice is almost tender and creamy-looking, about 18 minutes.
5. Add the spinach and peas and cook until the spinach is wilted. Add the asparagus and cook just until the vegetables are hot. Add the sautéed mushrooms. Stir in the Parmesan and Herbs and more broth if the risotto seems too thick.