Serious cooking

Posted: October 15, 2012 in Cooking, Food porn, recipes, Supportive Partner Woman, Wegman's

Supportive Partner Woman (Mistress of the Twittergraph!) and I did some cooking this weekend, trying to jump-start back to our healthier lifestyle. With everything going on, healthy eating wasn’t quite at the forefront, convenience was.

We made an excursion to Wegman’s on Saturday. This was our regular Wegman’s… in Mechanicsburg, PA. It’s in the ideal retail complex. You have Wegman’s, Best Buy, Target, Office Max and Chick-Fil-A all in one complex. It’s like Christmas. We found a really nice beef roast and decided we’d throw that in the slow cooker and I’d make some other stuff, since SPW (Slave to the Voter’s Guide!) had to work. Sunday morning, we cooperated on getting the roast ready, although SPW (Eater of tasty beef!) did the lion’s share of the prep. I just measured out broth and chopped carrots and potatoes. Once it was cooking away, I made lunch… tomato soup and grilled ham & cheese sandwiches. Used a boxed Trader Joe’s soup that was pretty tasty, but it was in the pantry.


After SPW (Queen of the slow cooker!) left for work, I got down to business. I started by opting to make from-scratch risotto for the first time. I used mushrooms, garlic, shallots, white wine and chicken stock, along with arborio rice and, well, I thought it turned out to be pretty good. Had the right level of stickiness, and it was the right texture. I had been dreading it, but the actual making process wasn’t that bad. I was amazed with the quantity of risotto 1.5 cups of arborio rice actually makes. It sucked up around 6.5 cups of liquid! I’m going to add the recipe to this post… I will be using it again, although probably not until I manage to eat the rest of this batch 🙂

Brings me to the next topic… leftovers. This is one place where Supportive Partner Woman and I disagree. She detests leftovers… I think they are the greatest thing ever. I like variety in my meals, but if I can have a nice, balanced meal without spending a ton of time to make it, well, I’m all for it.

In other changes, I start a long period of day shift this week. It will seem strange, but it also gives me more time to cook a fresh meal. Hopefully, Supportive Partner Woman will be able to come home for dinner on a regular basis once her job situation settles down. We shall see.

Here’s the risotto recipe. All measurements are not exact 🙂

Mushroom Risotto

6 cups chicken broth – divided
3 tablespoons olive oil – divided
8 oz. white mushrooms thinly sliced
2 diced shallots (I had some in a jar, so I used those)
3 cloves garlic
1 1/2 cup arborio rice
1/2 cup dry white wine (I used Little Penguin pinot grigio)
4 tablespoons butter
1/3 cup Parmesan
3 tablespoons finely chopped chives (I omitted)
sea salt to taste
coarse ground black pepper to taste

1) In a saucepan, warm the broth over low heat.

2) Warm 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir in the mushrooms, and cook until soft, about 3 minutes. Remove mushrooms and their liquid, and set aside.

3) Add 1 tablespoon olive oil to skillet, and stir in the shallots. Cook 1 minute. Add rice, stirring to coat with oil, about 2 minutes. When the rice has taken on a pale, golden color, pour in wine, stirring constantly until the wine is fully absorbed. Add 1/2 cup broth to the rice, and stir until the broth is absorbed. Continue adding broth 1/2 cup at a time, stirring continuously, until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is al dente, about 20-30 minutes.

4) Remove from heat, and stir in mushrooms with their liquid, butter, chives, and parmesan. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

There you have it. Just remember to be patient and keep stirring.

More tomorrow!

Song of the Day: The Forecast (Calls for Pain) – Robert Cray Band
Currently Reading: First Family – David Baldacci

Quote of the Day:

I don’t like food that’s too carefully arranged; it makes me think that the chef is spending too much time arranging and not enough time cooking. If I wanted a picture I’d buy a painting. – Andy Rooney

  1. Good read, The risotto sounds delicious!

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