Rainy Day Comfort Cuisine

July 7th, 2017 § 2 comments

Driving rain and brisk winds on Prince Edward Island. Evening supper must concentrate on warm comfort. Now that asparagus are in season, there can be few things more comforting than asparagus risotto. HG never orders risotto in a restaurant. It always disappoints. Not surprising. Making proper risotto requires time (20 minutes or more) and concentration. In order to make a profit, restaurants have to resort to pre-cooking or other time saving procedures. Here’s how HG/BSK collaborate on lush pot of risotto. BSK sliced half an onion paper thin. HG cooked the onion and toasted one cup of Italian Arborio rice in olive oil. Many recipes suggest adding white wine at this point and cooking until it evaporates. HG ignores this. Doesn’t enhance the dish. HG adds hot chicken broth (one ladleful at a time) and stirs busily until it evaporates. The aim is to make the rice creamy but not mushy. This takes 20 minutes of adding broth (one and a half containers typically), stirring, stirring and stirring. Meanwhile, BSK cuts the asparagus into thirds and steams the vegetable. Now there is some important timing. (Misguided recipes call for cooking the asparagus with the rice and broth resulting in mushy asparagus). Just a few minutes before the rice is done and the asparagus is cooked but still crisp, the asparagus is added to the pot. When the rice hits the right note of creaminess, a big dollop of butter and plenty of grated parmigiana is stirred into the pot. At table, BSK grates some high quality parmigiana (from a fresh chunk) on each dish. Many grinds of black pepper. Red wine is poured. Goodbye, rainy day gloom.

§ 2 Responses to Rainy Day Comfort Cuisine"

  • Jo Ann Brune says:

    I agree on all points risotto. It’s a commitment. I’m sure you don’t remember me but I worked at GF fresh out of Montclair State in Fair Isle sweaters and clogs (occasionally favor the sweaters but abandoned the clogs as age increased and agility waned). I learned a lot, including the merits of mortadella, learned oddly enough from my Jewish principal. I remember all quite fondly. I enjoy your blog and perspectives. Hope life has been treating you kindly. Please give my warmest regards to BSK who was always so kind to me. ~ JB

    • Gerry says:

      Yes, Jo Ann, I remember you with fondness and am pleased I expanded your culinary horizon. BSK recalls you too and sends her best.

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