Monday, April 7, 2008


Mock risotto (recipe in the comments)
Salad with balsamic vinaigrette

Hot tea
Well we're back on track to our normal eating habits after yesterdays lapse :) We re-tried the mock risotto recipe from Feb 16 with instant brown rice to try to make this a bit shorter to prepare. As you may recall, the first version we did was out of sight, but we hadn't been able to find the instant brown rice our recipe called for at either of our main stores (Whole Food's and Trader Joe's). After a special trip to a "normal" grocery store, we procured the instant version. In all the recipe is very similar to that made with the regular long grain brown rice, except faster (obviously) and I like the texture a bit better with the instant. It is somehow more "risotto". We have added several additional seasonings and like this new version even more. It's always such a blessing when the shorter version is the better version. Excellent all around!

Prep Notes
Difficulty: Easy
Chopping: Onion, garlic, asparagus, bell pepper, scallions
Time: 35 minutes
Make ahead: I think this saves reasonably well, but if I had my preference, I would make it just before serving.

J: "I can't believe this is instant rice!"
M: "Unbelievable."

1 comment:

J said...

This was originally posted ith a cooking time of 35 minutes on the rice. It should read *5* minutes!!!

Mock Risotto – M & J (inspired by Eating Well)
Serves 4

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, finely diced
¼ teaspoon salt
4 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
2 cups instant brown rice (such as by Minute)
2 ½ cups broth (chicken or vegetable)
12 oz frozen asparagus, defrosted in the microwave (with a bit of water) for 2 minutes, and chopped into ¼” pieces
1 red bell pepper, finely diced
1 cup frozen peas, thawed
4 ounces reduced-fat cream cheese (Neufchatel)
scant ½ cup grated Asiago or Parmesan cheese (no more)
½ cup chopped scallions
½ t white pepper
¼ t freshly ground nutmeg
1t Dijon mustard (optional)

Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add onion and salt and cook, stirring often, until soft and just beginning to brown, 4 to 6 minutes. Add rice and garlic and cook until the garlic is fragrant, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Add broth and bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes.

Remove cover and spread asparagus and bell pepper on top of the simmering rice - do not stir into the rice mixture. Replace cover and continue simmering, adjusting the heat if necessary, until the liquid is almost absorbed (don’t move on if it’s too wet) and the asparagus is bright green but still crisp, about 5 minutes.

Add peas and cream cheese; stir until the mixture is creamy and the cheese is incorporated. Return to a simmer and continue cooking until the liquid has evaporated and the asparagus is tender, about 3-5 minutes more. Stir in Asiago (or Parmesan), scallions, pepper, nutmeg, and Dijon (if using).

Originally posted April 7, 2008 11:28 PM