Recently, as most of you know, I acquired 24 new ones. New to me at least. Among the gems are few clunkers. One such clunker is titled, "Meatless Cooking: Celebrity Style", copyright 1975. The some contributors to this cookbook are pretty interesting. And, when I say interesting I mean "never have stepped foot in a kitchen". Such as:
- Macaroni and Cheese by Nancy and Ronald Reagan. Why is it that I just can't visualize Nancy in the kitchen making a big ole pot of mac and cheese?
- Buttermilk Soup with Oat Cakes by Victor Borge (pleeease!) and
- Soybean Casserole by Rodney Dangerfield. Was Rodney a vegetarian? This just seemed highly unlikely to me.
I will pass on one that is so good it should be a sin. (Matt-man, it is not a sin. It has no meat. Just looking out for you buddy.) I got this off a box of Fantastic World Foods - Arborio Rice that I picked up on a manager's special. I buy my arborio rice in the bulk bins but kept the box just for this recipe.
As you all know I'm not real good at following recipes exactly and refuse to buy ingredients that I wouldn't normally have around the house or run to the store if I've run out of something. For instance, the mushrooms, shallot and cream in this recipe.
Fantastic Tuscan Mushroom Risotto
1 1/2 cups arborio rice
5 cups vegetable broth (use chicken if you roll that way)
1/2 cup porcini mushrooms (use any ole kind you have or none like I did last night)
1 cup white mushrooms (see above)
2 Tbsp shallots, chopped (any onion will do)
1/4 cup butter (recipe calls for unsalted, are they kidding? Use regular)
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1/2 cup white wine (so I added a little extra, sue me. I could have drank the last couple of tablespoons)
1/4 cup heavy cream (no cream last night but I did use some non-fat evaporated milk. Worked great and saved tons of calories)
1 cup Parmesan, Romano or Asiago cheese, grated (word of caution, don't skimp on the cheese. Unless you don't like cheese. You don't like cheese? What's wrong with you?)
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste (skip the salt; it is already in the butter)
1 Tbsp parsley, chopped (I used dried and a tad bit more than a Tbsp. Okay, like a small palm full more.)
- On medium heat in a large pan combine butter, garlic, shallots, mushrooms and arborio rice.
- Heat for about 2 minutes, stirring well.
- Add white wine and let simmer on low for 2 minutes.
- With lid off, add broth and cream and let simmer on low until liquid is absorbed, approximately 25 minutes, stirring regularly. You can leave this alone to do other things or what I did which was sit on my butt and drink red wine. It only needs a good stir about every 5 minutes or so.
- Add cheese of choice and salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with parsley and grated cheese. Makes about 4 healthy servings. Healthy nothing, this makes like about 10 servings at our house. JR and I will be having this for lunch and I make chowder out of the left overs.