Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Water in the hole

Since Arel has flown the coop, I have been going out to eat non-stop. I guess the lack of 'Relly sort of puts a damper on any form of family meal at home. I eat lunch out with friends, go for dinner with my parents, and have been spending a huge amount of quality hungover time with my good friends Cathy, Emily, and diner egg white omelets. 

Tonight, however, my mom and I decided--enough was enough. No longer could we throw away hundreds of dollars at Sidewalk Bistro or El Portofino (two restaurants we frequent in Piermont.) It was about time we re-kick the joys of home cooking. And so we did. My mom marinated and grilled steak, made a cucumber and yellow pepper salad (using all fresh vegetables from the farmers market) and I made my specialty: risotto. Now, I am accustomed to making risotto the way I have always loved to eat it--a lot of cream, a lot of Parmesan, and a lot of mushrooms. Mushroom risotto has been a comfort food to me ever since I watched its preparation on Molto Mario. However, this time, neither my mom nor I could stomach such heavy comfort food in this heat (93 degrees today...not okay...). It was time to call to the improvisational culinary gods for a bit of help. I rummaged through the pantry and found my handy arborio rice. Now all I needed were a few fitting veggies and a really great dairy-free liquid to bind it all together. 

And so it went. Meet, basil, asparagus, and tomato risotto:

2 c. Madeira wine
2 c. Low-sodium chicken consomme
1/2 Bundle of largely chopped asparagus 
1/2 Can of organic tomato bisque or stewed tomatoes 
1 Handful of roughly chopped basil
2 tbsp. White truffle oil
4 tbsp. Balsamic vinegar 

*Takes about 25-30 mins. to cook. Stir the liquids into the pot in intervals. Very small amounts at a time. Stir constantly in order to achieve a very creamy consistency. Right before serving, drizzle some more balsamic vinegar and truffle oil over the rice and just have everyone mix it in. 

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