Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Garden Risottto

The early garden yields a great variety of young vegetables that are very happy in risotto. I started with two cups of Arborio rice that I sauteed in olive oil until white. I used a largish wok. In the meantime, I scraped young carrots with an abrasive cloth and cut them into quarter-inch rounds and blanched them for a few minutes until not quite cooked, drained them and rinsed under cold running water. I used about four cups of vegetables all together. More or less will not be dramatic.

After the rice was white I added two fingerling eggplants cut across into quarte-inch slices, one zucchini and one summer squash sliced the same way. I sauteed them briefly adding a little bit more olive oil. After about two minutes of sauteeing, I began to add chicken stock (vegetable stock could be used instead for vegetarians and vegans) about a half of a cup at a time. When absorbed, I added more. When the rice was about half cooked, I added a handful of cherry tomatoes, a handful of sugar snap peas and a handful of shelled peas.
When the rice was almost completely cooked, I added the carrots, a quarter cup of onion scapes cut across into quarter-inch pieces and a good handful of apple mint cut across into thin strips. I also added some cooked and peeled shrimp for my protein-loving husband. As soon as the shrimp were warmed, I added coarse kosher salt and served. I made a good deal as this has no butter and is good eaten cold the following day.
It is perfect for the gluten intolerant and lactose intolerant--no butter or cheese. Without the shrimp it is vegetarian.

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