There are many times when I open the fridge with no plan or inspiration at all, and end up with something more delicious than if I had planned it for a week. I pull out random ingredients, throw them down on the counter, and do my own little version of Chopped. I also keep bugging The Wife to one day surprise me with a box of secret ingredients, and shout "Allez cuisine!" So far she has not obliged...so I do it myself...usually BY myself. p.s. I know those are two different shows, but I want what I want, ok?
Risotto is a great way to use up some on-their-way-out veggies, or to highlight a specific ingredient or two, as I've done here. Since I wanted to highlight the lemongrass and these very sexy purple spring onions I picked up this weekend, I decided that I wasn't going to use any ingredients that might compete with my stars, like garlic or wine - which comes with the obvious bonus of getting to keep ALL of the wine for myself.
1. You don't need to use the cheesecloth if you don't have it on hand. You can just strain or scoop out the lemongrass before you start adding the broth to the rice.
2. Toasting the rice before adding broth is important because of science. It helps give you a creamier texture.
3. Start cooking the chard about 5 minutes before risotto is done. It happens quickly.
1 cup arborio or carnaroli rice
6 cups vegetable broth
1 stalk of lemongrass, cut into 1 inch pieces
1/2 cup sliced spring onions (the white and light green parts...also thinly slice the darker green parts, omitting the top inch of the darkest green part, and set aside for garnish)
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup plain, unsweetened almond milk
salt and peper to taste
Sauteed Rainbow Chard (recipe below)
sauteed rainbow chard
2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
In a wide skillet or deep pot, heat the oil to medium-high. Add the greens, and a healthy pinch of salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, 4 to 5 minutes, until wilted and tender. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Keep warm until you're ready to plate.