I've known that I wanted to try my hand at a risotto for a long time but I had two things stopping me - the white wine and the parmesan cheese. See, risottos are so simple and require so few ingredients that you really need to use some good quality stuff. Unfortunately, I don't really drink wine very often so I rarely have any on hand and good quality parmesan cheese can get pretty pricy. Luckily, however, my parents are avid wine drinkers and they also have no qualms about spending $13 a lb on high end parmesan cheese from the local Italian supermarket. So there IS a silver lining to this whole moving back to NY thing - I can steal parmesan cheese and alcohol from them whenever I so desire!
When I told my parents I was making risotto, they were all for it so I decided to make enough for the whole family. I originally intended to make a butternut squash risotto but my dad made a face at it, so I switched to a pea risotto. They also insisted there be some kind of meat in it, so I added some diced chicken. Notice how accomodating I was?
The end result: This was really good. The parmesan and white wine really came through and the sweetness of the peas nicely complemented the saltiness of the other ingredients. My mom couldn't eat it with the rest of us but when I asked her how she liked it later in the night, her eyes lit up and she said she had been gushing about it to one of her friends on the phone just a few minutes after eating it. The true sign of success, however, is that the pan was licked clean. Joanne: 1, Picky Eaters: 0.
I am submitting this to Meeta's Monthly Mingle. The theme this month is Ravishing Rice and it will be hosted by Nags of Edible Garden.
Serves 5, adapted from Got No Milk
2 cups arborio rice
1 lb chicken
1 lb frozen peas, thawed
3/4 cup white wine
1 quart chicken broth
3 oz parmesan cheese
4 cloves garlic
2 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
1 tbsp butter
1. Cut the chicken into dice-sized pieces. Salt and pepper it. Heat some cooking spray in a small pan and saute the chicken until cooked. Remove from heat and set aside.
2. Cut the onion into small pieces and mince the garlic. In a pot, heat the chicken broth.
3. Heat the olive oil in a large pan. Saute the onion and garlic for 10 minutes on medium-low heat (or until soft). Add the rice and cook, continually stirring, for 1 minute.
4. Add the white wine and cook until absorbed. Add one ladle of the chicken broth. Stir until all of the chicken broth is evaporated. Then add another ladle-ful. Keep doing this until all of the broth is used up. By the end, the rice should have formed a thick, glutinous mixture. Add the peas and chicken, a tad bit of salt and pepper to taste. Heat through.
5. Remove from heat and stir in the parmesan cheese and butter. Taste again for seasoning.