Sunday, January 29, 2012

Roasted Root Vegetable Risotto with Preserved Meyer Lemon Ricotta

Like ravioli, risotto is one of those perfect vehicles for leftovers.  Once you get the risotto technique down, there are endless possibilities.  You can pretty much throw anything in there.  We had a bunch of leftover roasted root vegetables from dinner on Friday night- sweet potato, golden beets, brussel sprouts and zucchini, all simply roasted with olive oil, salt & pepper-  so thats what went into this risotto. 

This serves around 3-4 people, depending on how hungry you are.  It would be a great as part of a larger meal as a first course, but tonight it was dinner for my wife and I and we still have some leftover... maybe I'll bring it for lunch tomorrow if I remember to take it.  I probably won't, unfortunately.

  • Start by sauteeing a half an onion, 2 cloves of garlic, 1 anchovy filet, 1/4 of a preserved lemon rind (diced) in butter and a little olive oil over medium heat (more on preserved lemons later).
  • Toss in a cup of arborio rice.
  • Add a little white wine and white wine vinegar.
  • When all the liquid is gone, begin adding stock by the half cup, consistently stirring, adding more as each batch of liquid is mostly absorbed.  You can use chicken stock, vegetable stock or water. The continuous stirring is what will give you a creamy risotto.  
  • Once the rice is creamy and just al dente, fold in some spinach leaves, toss in the roasted vegetables, some butter, chopped parsley and a handful of grated pecorino romano or parmesan cheese. I prefer the pecorino, its a bit tangier, really salty.  I love it.
  • Give it a careful stir so you don't break up the vegetables and serve it up.  Top it with some chopped parsley, scallions, extra virgin olive oil, some shaved cheese and the Preserved Meyer Lemon Ricotta.
  • Preserved Meyer Lemon Ricotta: stir together 2-3 tablespoons of ricotta, 1/4 of a preserved lemon rind (minced), a few bashed up fennel seeds, salt & pepper.  The preserved lemon and be substituted for some lemon zest and juice.  No big deal.
  • If you really want to guild the Lili, add a little truffle salt on top.  I got some sent to me recently by Marx Foods.  Check them out, they have some really cool stuff.

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