Saturday, April 23, 2011

Leftovers Risotto

Even though we are sisters, we have a very different approach to food and photography. Each fortnight we are going to choose the same ingredient or theme and post the result.

A kitchen staple with many uses both sweet and savoury. Rice is cheap, lasts for ages and can be glamorous or really simple.  

Rice facts
Rice is a symbol of life and fertility, which is why rice was traditionally throw at weddings.
Japanese people believe it is important to not waste rice, so it you leave rice in your bowl it is considered to be rude.
There are more than 40,000 varieties of rice that grow on every continent except on Antarctica

Leftovers Risotto

What you need
Arborio rice 250 grams
Olive oil
1-2 liters chicken stock or water and stock cubes (some wine also works well here)
2-4 garlic cloves
2 onions
1 cup Parmesan cheese
Leftovers such as meat or chicken from a roast, vegetables, tomatoes, mushrooms, anchovies, capers, herbs - anything that is good cooked! 
Salt and pepper to taste 

How to make

Saute the onions and garlic in olive oil until soft and add the rice. People often say saute until rice is clear but I have never managed to achieve this.
Just saute for 5 minutes or so making sure the rice is coated with the oil.  
Add about a cup of stock and stir, keep adding stock in portions, stirring and adding until the rice is cooked. This will take a minimum of 30 minutes. If you run out of stock water or even wine is fine to use.  
Towards the end of the cooking process, add your meat and vegetables i.e leftovers. Stir through Parmesan, season with salt and pepper and serve. 

Really easy, takes a bit of time but uses up your leftovers and turns them into a rustic and homely meal.    

Chicken and Rice balls

What you need
500grams minced chicken or blitz chicken thighs/breasts in the food processor until like mince.
left over cooked rice - 1-2 cups
1 onion
2 cloves garlic
Frozen vegetables - I used a pea, broccoli and cauliflower mix.
Salt and pepper to taste   
Breadcrumbs to coat balls with  

How to make
This is super easy! basically you blitz everything except the rice in the food processor. Add this to the rice and mix so its thick and comes together as a ball. Coat with breadcrumbs and place onto an oiled baking tray. DONT use baking paper as a bit of water comes out of the balls and it just doesn't work! 
Bake at 180 degrees for about  20-30 minutes or until the chicken is cooked. 

Serve with a chutney or tomato sauce and crispy green salad. 
Great for kids, in lunch boxes or at parties.    



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