Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Red wine risotto with peas

Source: Giada DeLaurentis

I can't believe I haven't posted this recipe yet. We make it all the time. I guess I probably haven't posted it yet because risotto is just one of those dishes that you really don't need a recipe for. You kind of just toss in what you got and what you like. But I really do like this particular combo of red wine, which gives the dish a beautiful rich hue and the bright green peas. And I know that Giada is just a food tv personality, but I've got to say that I genuinely enjoy many of her recipes. Most of the time her recipes are light without much, if any butter and cream and they are almost always incredibly easy. And to top it off, not in this recipe, but in many of her other recipes she is very heavy handed with the lemon. Any gal that uses a lot of acid in her cooking is a gal after my own tastebuds.

Note, once you learn the basic risotto method, you can make up your own versions. The gist is this: soften your onions / garlic in fat, add the rice and toast, add some wine until absorbed, then add hot liquid about 1/2 - 1 cup at a time, only adding more when the previously added hot liquid has been absorbed. This slow addition of liquid will allow the rice to release its starches and your texture will be velvety smooth. versatile.

3 1/2 cups chicken broth,preferably homemade but can substitue low-sodium boxed or flavorful veggie broth to make vegetarian
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup finely chopped onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup arborio rice, or medium-grain white rice
1/2 cup dry red wine
1/3 cup frozen peas, defrosted
1/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves
1/2 cup grated Parmesan, plus additional for garnish (I always add more)
Salt and freshly ground black peppe

1. Heat your broth in a sauce pan, keep it warm and covered.
2. Melt butter in a separate large pan over medium heat, sweat onions until transluscent, add garlic, saute 1 minute.
3. Stir in rice until transluscent, about 1 minute.
4. Add red wine, stir until absorbed, about 1 minute.
5. Add 3/4 cup hot broth, reduce heat to low to the point that the broth and rice are just simmering. Allow liquid to be absorbed, stirring occaisionally (about 5-8 minutes).
6. Repeat addition of broth until broth is gone and risotto is nice texture.
7. Stir in peas and parsley. Season to taste.
8. Garnish with parmesan and serve hot.

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