Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Risotto Two Ways

Risotto is one of the great Italian comfort foods, and although the temperature outdoors is piping hot, a friend of mine demanded I make it for them after seeing a picture of it on the internet.

Butter, oil, starch and more butter.
In her words, " Can you really put a price (or caloric value) on pure, undiluted joy?"

 Obviously, a classic risotto recipe requires that I cheat from the 100-mile challenge, so my compromise was making it "100-mile friendly" the following day. I substituted pearl barley for rice, only used butter (no olive oil), no lemon zest at the end, no pine nuts and stuck to local cheeses. Personally, I enjoyed the classic recipe made with Arborio rice a little better. I found its flavour more complex and the rice a better carrier of stock and wine. Both versions were served with a salty pesto meant to be stirred into the creamy base upon eating. My brother however, preferred the barley version. In the second day's version I had to season the stock more (salt, bay leaves, thyme) because the barley kept going bland with each liquid addition. Taste and adapt! The final product was creamy and just as flavourful as the day's before.
A friend from Crossfit Kitchener (my gym) supplied me with a bundle of collard greens this week as well! What better way to make a dish 100-mile than throw in some serious, local foliage? Okay, so risotto isn't exactly the optimal pre-workout snack, but I figure I can blame this one on my lovely, adolescent metabolic rate. I simply de-stemmed the collards, washed them, cut them into ribbons and threw them in the risotto pot for the last 20 minutes. When it was time to eat, they twirled around the fork like tagliatelle! YUM!

1 comment:

  1. Congrats on that contest girl, very well deserved.
    It's pretty cool to see my collards on your blog, lol.
    See ya at the gym