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Friday, September 9, 2016

Homemade Lemony Rice-Parsley Salad (Recipe)

Arborio rice is the magic ingredient in this easy, tangy salad from cookbook author Viana La Place.  While most rice salads call for long-grain rice, arborio's high starch content produces a creamy texture that's terrific with fresh parsley and lemon juice and zest.  And arborio cooks faster (in only 15 minutes) than long-grain rice, too.


1 cup arborio rice
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 cup tightly packed flat-leaf parsley leaves, coarsely chopped
1/2 small sweet Italian frying pepper, cut into 1/4-inch dice
1/3 cup oil-cured pitted black olives, coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon capers, rinsed and drained
1 1/2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
Salt and freshly ground pepper
Lemon wedges, for serving

4 servings - Total: 25min


1.  Bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil. Add the rice and simmer over moderate heat until just tender, about 14 minutes. Drain thoroughly.
2.  In a large bowl, toss the rice with the olive oil and lemon juice. Stir in the parsley, frying pepper, olives, capers and lemon zest and season with salt and pepper. Serve warm or at room temperature with lemon wedges.

Grace Parisi Beet Risotto (Recipe)

Beets give this unexpected risotto from Food and Wine's Grace Parisi stunning color and and delicate sweetness.  To avoid staining hands and countertops, Grace suggests wearing rubber gloves and shredding the beets directly into a stainless steel bowl.


7 cups chicken stock or 3 1/2 cups low-sodium broth mixed with 3 1/2 cups of water
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 large sweet onion, finely chopped
2 large beets (12 ounces each), peeled and coarsely shredded, plus thinly sliced beets for garnish
3 cups arborio rice (1 1/4 pounds)
6 ounces young pecorino cheese, freshly grated (1 1/2 cups)
2 teaspoons poppy seeds, plus more for garnish

8 servings - Total: 1hr


1.  In a saucepan, bring the stock to a simmer; cover and keep warm. In a medium enameled cast-iron casserole, melt the butter in the oil. Add the onion and cook over moderately high heat, stirring, until softened, 5 minutes. Add the shredded beets and cook, stirring, until the pan is dry, 12 minutes. Spoon half of the beets into a small bowl.
2.  Add the rice to the casserole and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add 1 cup of the warm stock to the rice and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until the stock is nearly absorbed. Continue adding the stock 1 cup at a time, stirring constantly, until the rice is al dente and a thick sauce forms, 22 minutes. Stir in the cooked beets, cheese and the 2 teaspoons of poppy seeds. Cook, stirring, until heated through; add a few tablespoons of water if the risotto is too thick. Spoon the risotto into bowls. Garnish with sliced beets and poppy seeds and serve.

* For this shockingly pink risotto, sparkling rose, with its own depth and richness, is perfect.  California's top producers use Champagne methods to make their sparkling wines but charge less than Champagne producers.  Try the NV Domaine Carneros Cuvee de la Pompadour Brut Rose or the 2006 Schramberg Brut Rose.