Thursday, July 28, 2011

lemony zucchini risotto

I know it's crazy to stand over a hot stove and make risotto in the middle of the summer, but I just had to make Mark Bittman's lemony zucchini risotto* last night. I justfied it with several truths:

1. Our AC is on, because it's really too hot to try to suffer with open windows.
2. We were having the risotto with gazpacho, which I felt would be a cooling foil to the warm, creamy rice.
3. Edwin loves creamy pasta, and risotto is so close to pasta I figured I'd toss him a bone and make a favorite.

Besides, with this brown rice risotto, you parcook the brown rice, which helps it absorb water quickly and evenly, so it didn't take as long as my last risotto.

I started by parboiling the rice for about 15 minutes. I drained it well, then used the same pot to heat olive oil and saute an onion. Once that was softened, I stirred in the rice until it was glossy and coated with oil. Then the risotto process began. Instead of having a pot of simmering broth on the stove, Mr. Bittman said I could just add broth, 1/2 cup at a time, to my pot. It worked just as well as the simmering broth method, and was much easier than ladling hot broth every few minutes.

After about 15 minutes of adding vegetable broth, I stirred in 3 grated zucchini and cooked until it released its liquid and the mixture again dried out a bit. Then I continued adding broth, stirring until the pan was almost dry, and tasted as I went. Once the rice was ready, I stirred in the zest and juice of a lemon, lots of fresh basil and some parmesan cheese.
We had our risotto with gazpacho, and I have to say, I'm a genius for that pairing. The risotto was creamy and rich but the lemon flavor kept it light and refreshing, and it played perfectly with our gazpacho. Edwin was particularly impressed with the risotto, as I thought he would be. We were thrilled to have leftovers for lunch today. Bittman, Mark. The Food Matters Cookbook. "Lemony Zucchini Risotto." p. 302-3.

No comments:

Post a Comment