Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Baked Risotto with Asparagus, Spinach, and Parmesan

Last time I made risotto, I undercooked it. Risotto is really hard to make properly because you have to keep stirring it and stirring it to make sure it absorbs the liquid perfectly so it will be nice and soft. That's why I was drawn to this recipe - the footnote said it was a foolproof way to make perfectly cooked, effortless risotto. And they were right!!!!

I just stirred it in the pot, poured it into a casserole dish (damn not having a Dutch oven!) and baked it, and voila! It really did create perfectly cooked, soft risotto. It was very creamy from the Parmesan and tasty. We agreed it would be good to make again when we need something to make ahead of time (the magazine said it reheats well and freezes well, and we always need recipes that fit that criteria), but that we wouldn't make it again on a regular weeknight. I liked it a lot though. :)

Substitutions: I used vegetable stock, and I used some frozen spinach that I had thawed and drained.

Baked Risotto with Asparagus, Spinach, and Parmesan
Cooking Light, May 2002

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 cup finely chopped onion
1 cup uncooked Arborio rice
8 cups spinach leaves (about 4 ounces)
2 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 cup (2 ounces) grated fresh Parmesan cheese, divided
1 1/2 cups (1-inch) diagonally sliced asparagus

Preheat oven to 400°.

Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion; cook 4 minutes or until tender. Add rice; stir well. Stir in spinach, broth, salt, and nutmeg. Bring to a simmer; cook 7 minutes. Stir in 1/4 cup cheese.

Cover and bake at 400° for 15 minutes. Stir in asparagus; sprinkle with 1/4 cup cheese. Cover and bake an additional 15 minutes or until liquid is almost absorbed.

Yield: 4 servings

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