Lazy girl’s one-pot tuna and mushroom risotto from the pantry

February 16, 2007 at 1:48 am Leave a comment

One of my favourite things to do as a cook is to try and concoct a wonderful meal using only bits and pieces left over from the grocery shop the week before. Risottos are a fabulous way to combine bits and pieces in a cheap, easy and delicious meal. I love cooking risottos – I find it very therapeutic standing over the stove stirring- so this is a perfect one-pot, lazy, cheap thursday evening meal for two (with leftovers!).

Ingredients:
~1/2 finely diced brown onion
~1 stick of celery, finely diced
~3 cloves garlic, finely diced
~1 tblspn good quality olive oil (or can use the oil from the tuna if on a budget)
~1 cup arborio rice
~440g tin tomatos
~180g tin tuna, packed in oil, drained. My favourite tuna is Sirena but you could use any dolphin-friendly brand
~1 tspn italian or mixed herbs (dried)
~splash of red wine (optional)
~splash of balsamic vinegar (optional)
~8-10 large mushrooms, sliced
~1/2 cup frozen peas
~1/2 cup shredded fresh herbs (I used basil; italian parsely would also work)
~fresh grated parmesan, to serve

Method:
In a large, non-stick saucepan, heat the oil until fragrent and gently fry the onion, garlic and celery until transparent. Add the rice and stir to coat with the oil. Toast rice until just transparent – 2-3 mins at most. Add tomatos, dried herbs, red wine, balsamic vinegar and tuna and stir to combine.

Fill a large jug with tap water. Add enough water to the risotto to just cover the rice – about 1/4 of a cup should be sufficient. Stir the risotto constantly, allowing the water to be absorbed before adding more. During this process, the liquids in the pot should be just simmering – adjust the heat as necessary to achieve this level of cooking. When the water has mostly evaporated, add more and repeat the stirring process. Keep doing this until the rice has swelled in size to approximately double, and is al-dente to the bite. Taste for seasoning – I normally find a little salt and a lot of pepper is needed to give the flavour I prefer. When the rice is al-dente, add the mushrooms and the peas and stir through. Continue to cook, adding more water as necessary, until the mushrooms are soft. Turn off the heat, stir through the fresh herbs and serve immediately with a little grated fresh parmesan on top.

This recipe makes three very generous servings. Calories – quite a few!! Will calculate later – keep portion size to under 3/4 cup to be safe.

For a cheap, lazy dinner, I suggest a cheap, lazy wine. The current release of Fishbone wines from Blackwood wines in south-west WA are excellent quaffers, at about AUD$13 per bottle. The 2005 shiraz/cab has everything you would want from a cheap, easy to drink red – plenty of fruit and spice and no nasty tannic aftertaste.

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Entry filed under: food, wine.

Valentine’s day dinner – Stir fried king prawns with ginger, soy and tamarind Jessica Stam may be the most beautiful woman alive today!

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