Friday, December 18, 2009

The best quick fix dinner: risotto

It’s Friday night. It’s been a long week and after fighting traffic and a disastrous stop at Wal-Mart (it was an emergency!), I finally dragged myself into the dimly lit house, quickly transformed into the “I’m not going out Karin” (translated: pajama pants, t-shirt, and slippers), threw on my apron and thought about what to cook for dinner. It needed to be quick because I sure didn’t want to be on my feet anymore than necessary. A quick glance in the refrigerator told me I had some roasted chicken I’d cooked earlier in the week, a couple of zucchinis, and a brick of Parmesan cheese. The pantry revealed chicken broth and the key ingredient in my absolute favorite quick fix dinner: Arborio rice.

In a matter of minutes, I had finely diced a purple onion and threw it on the heat in a tablespoon each of butter and olive oil. When the onions were translucent and smelling terrific, I added a cup of the rice and let the starch cook down for a minute or two. Then came the broth, which I added a ladleful at a time until it cooked down, and I added another ladleful. Meanwhile, I chopped up the zucchini, lightly sautéed it, chopped up some of the chicken and set it aside. After I’d added the 4 cups of chicken broth and the rice absorbed it (about 20 minutes), it was time to add the accoutrements, though I almost hated to add anything to the gloriously creamy, nutty goodness in the skillet. But I did and tossed in a healthy dose of the king of cheeses, Parmesan. After a few stirs, the risotto was ready. I toasted up a few pieces of sourdough bread in the oven and dinner was served, in under 30 minutes.

What a way to end a week: Christmas tree aglow with blue lights, the dog and cat curled up in front of the fireplace, my whole family at the dinner table together and a steaming bowl of creamy, melt-in-your-mouth risotto!


  1. yummo....however, I could never throw anything together like that last minute ;-)

  2. Yes you could! It's so much easier than you think! And so tasty!!