Mediterranean Risotto– makes 10 servings
1 1/2 cups Arborio rice
1 1/2 cups diced onion
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 teaspoons minced garlic
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup dry white wine (pinot grigio)
14.5 ounces diced tomatoes with basil, garlic and oregano
32 ounces (33% less sodium) chicken broth
3 cups baby spinach, stems removed
1/2 cup grated Parmesan Romano cheese
Garnish: 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese and fresh thyme
Plan to start the risotto 35 minutes before you are ready to eat. The dish does not hold well. Place chicken broth in a stockpot. Remove 1/2 cup broth and reserve for the end of the recipe. Bring broth to a boil then reduce heat to a simmer. While broth is heating get out the biggest skillet you have! I use a 12 inch skillet that has sides that are 3 inches deep. If you don’t have a skillet that large, use a stockpot. Heat olive oil over medium high heat until shimmering.
Reduce heat to medium, add onions and cook slowly, for about 4 minutes until transparent. Try not to brown the onion.
Stir constantly while you add the following ingredients. Add rice. Stir 3 minutes until rice becomes translucent on the edges. Add minced garlic, salt and pepper. Stir 30 seconds. Add white wine. Stir until it evaporates. Add tomatoes. Stir until the liquid is absorbed. Add 1/2 cup broth and cook, stirring constantly until the liquid is absorbed and the rice begins to sizzle in the pan. Repeat this process (add 1/2 cup broth, stir until liquid is absorbed and rice begins to sizzle) until all the hot broth has been used.
Add spinach, stirring just until spinach is mixed in with the rice. Stir in Parmesan Romano cheese. If risotto starts to set up use a little of the reserved 1/2 cup chicken broth.Transfer to a serving bowl and garnish with feta cheese and thyme. Serve immediately. Enjoy!
Published in The News and Neighbor on June 17, 2015