I seriously don’t know how single parents do it. Mr. Prevention was out of town last night and I had every intention of leaving work at 4, getting home at 5, and then working out and making dinner. Of course, that didn’t happen.
A stat lab had to be taken to the hospital and after a day of meeting preparation, I was the appointed lab-runner. How ever did I get so lucky? So at 5:30pm, there I am at a wreck of a hospital undergoing MAJOR renovations, searching for the lab. Um, I had planned to have been home, done with my workout, and making dinner by this time.
I’m focused on home/workout/getting the dog out, and the lab wants to ask me questions that I haven’t a clue the answers to. A frustrating 90 minutes and 25 miles later, I was home and in no mood to workout. And of course, Lily was BOUNCING off the walls with a long day’s worth of pent-up energy. A bulldog…bouncing off the walls. Can you picture it? Scary.
I looked at her and felt my stomach churn with hunger. Dinner wasn’t going to make itself…the workout would have to wait.
But lucky for him, he was around the night I made this Broccoli-Cheddar Risotto. I was recently making a mental note that it has been far too long since I last made risotto, and while I love the wine and salty meat traditional risottos, I was wanting something a bit outside of the box.
Make a mental note and you shall receive, I guess. It was the following morning that I was lazily waking up for the day when this recipe popped into my inbox from Faith’s blog. I love when menu planning becomes THAT easy.
With its basic ingredient list and weekday simplicity, this was sure a hit. This is a cross between the ultimate comfort food and classy food that is sure to win over any kid, or any man. Don’t let the looks fool you, the melted cheddar cheese makes its way around and between every morsel of creamy Arborio rice. Delicious!
Broccoli-Cheddar Risotto from An Edible Mosaic
4 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable stock
1 Tbsp olive oil
6 slices uncured turkey bacon, finely diced
1 medium onion, diced
1 cup Arborio rice
1 1/2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice + 2 1/2 Tbsp water
2 large cloves garlic, minced
3 cups broccoli florets, chopped small
1/8 tsp black pepper
4 oz 2% sharp cheddar, shredded
2 Tbsp Italian parsley, minced for garnish (optional)
Bring chicken stock to a simmer in a medium saucepan over medium heat; turn heat down to low so it stays hot as you cook the risotto.
Heat the oil in a separate medium saucepan over medium heat; add the turkey bacon and cook until crispy, about 5 minutes. Remove the turkey bacon with a slotted spoon and set aside for now. Add the onion to the oil you cooked the turkey bacon in and cook until soft but not brown, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the rice and cook until slightly browned and nutty smelling, about 3 to 4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the lemon juice/water mixture and cook until evaporated, about 1 minute. Stir in the garlic, broccoli, and black pepper.
Turn heat down to medium-low. Add 1/2 cup of the hot stock to the rice, stirring constantly until the liquid is almost completely absorbed, then adding more stock in the same manner. Continue this way until the risotto is tender with just a slight bite to it, about 20 to 25 minutes.
Turn off heat and stir in the cheese and turkey bacon; add salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle parsley on top (if using) and serve immediately.
Yield: 4 servings (about 1 1/3 cup each)
Nutrition Information (per serving): 393 calories; 15.3 g. fat; 41 mg. cholesterol; 497 mg. sodium; 45.5 g. carbohydrate; 2.3 g. fiber; 12.3 g. protein
Result: Fantastic! For a vegetarian option, omit the turkey bacon. This recipe offers up a nice balance of carbohydrate, protein, and fat while being moderate in sodium. Serve with a tossed salad and a great glass of red wine. Italy is about to meet American in one clever and delicious way! Enjoy!
Since the workout didn’t happen last night, that’s first on the agenda today. If another busy day goes by without a workout, I may never get my groove back. Gotta make it happen.