Well, my hubs is away for work tonight, so I thought I'd make a blog-worthy meal to share with you all.
I love a classic risotto. What I like to do is make a risotto "base" and add whatever mix-ins I want.
Start by adding 4 cups of chicken stock to a sauce pan. Add a pinch of saffron and allow the mixture to warm for about 10 minutes.
In 1 tbsp of butter and 1 tbsp of olive oil, sweat 1 small or 1/2 large white onion until just softened.
Add 1 cup of Arborio rice to the pan, allowing it to toast for about 2-3 minutes, stirring often to ensure it doesn't burn.
Next, add about 1/2 cup of dry, white wine (I used a Pinot Grigio) to the pan, stirring until the wine is almost completely absorbed by the rice.
Now is when you have to start really babysitting the risotto. Add about 2 ladle-fulls of the chicken stock at a time, stirring the rice until almost all of the liquid is absorbed, until the stock has all been used and the rice is cooked through and creamy-about 20 minutes.
The saffron gives the risotto not only a great, warm flavor, but also a really beautiful color.
When the risotto is cooked, add about 3/4 cup of shredded Parmesan cheese.
Next, I sauteed some of my veggies of choice--mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, spinach, and garlic.
Add these (or any other ingredients you may choose) to the risotto "base."
As my side dish, I went with roasted balsamic Brussels sprouts. This is a vegetable that gets such a bad rep, when they're actually really delicious!
Start by de-stemming and quartering 1 lb of sprouts, discarding the dark-green outer leaves (they can be bitter).
Next, toss them with 2 tbsp of olive oil, 2 tbsp of balsamic vinegar, 1 tsp of salt, and 1/2 tsp of pepper.
Roast the sprouts at 400 degrees. I like mine tender and slightly charred, so I leave them in for around 20 minutes. Adjust shorter or longer dependent on personal preference.