Tuesday, November 14, 2006

tomato and sausage risotto

tomato and sausage risotto

Alex cooked dinner last night and, oh, what a meal he made! Two weeks ago, my mother forwarded me this Tomato and Sausage Risotto recipe from her Martha Stewart Everyday Food newsletter — like it surprises you that it runs in the family — with only the caption “this was very good.” I have been meaning to make it ever since, but I guess we can argue I lost my chance. As I put together a grocery order on Saturday night, aligning it to recipes Alex would want to cook this week and food I could assemble for myself while working at home, this risotto was at the top.

alex cooks

Because it’s fantastic! And really, how could it not be? Mom recommends it. It’s thick, hearty, actually contains flesh (something of a rarity on this site, I realize) and enough greens that if you’re too tuckered out to also assemble a salad, oh, it’s already in there. Of interest to nobody but me, it’s also ridiculously easy to eat with one hand, so gloppy and chunky in all of the best ways, as well as a most delicious of one-bowl meals.

And then he did the dishes.

mise en place - not mine!

As for the whole, you know, sling thing, I’m feeling a little better. The myriad of bruises are edging into rainbow stage, an eyesore but as any klutz knows, the first step in the right direction. Morning seems to be the worse time as I’ve stubbornly refused to take the heavier painkillers they’ve prescribed me, the thought of being groggy or even dizzy more frightening than discomfort. This morning, I plopped myself on the sofa waiting for the Advil to kick in and though I’ve resisted this so far, flipped on the morning talk shows. If there could be a better sign that I had made the right choice, Martha (OMG! Martha!!1!) herself was on, explaining Borat to her audience as “poopy humor.” Oh people, how could this not be a good day?


Tomato and Sausage Risotto
Adapted from Martha Stewart Everyday Food

Serves 4

1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes in juice
1 tablespoon olive oil
3/4 pound sweet or hot Italian sausage, casings removed
1 small onion, finely chopped
Coarse salt and ground pepper
1 cup Arborio rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 bunch flat-leaf spinach (10 to 14 ounces), washed well, tough stems removed, chopped (about 7 cups)
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving (optional)
2 tablespoons butter

  1. In a small saucepan, combine tomatoes (with their juice) and 3 cups water. Bring just to a simmer; keep warm over low heat.
  2. In a medium saucepan, heat oil over medium. Add sausage and onion; season with salt and pepper. Cook, breaking up sausage with a spoon, until sausage is opaque and onion has softened, 3 to 5 minutes.
  3. Add rice; cook, stirring until well coated, 1 to 2 minutes. Add wine; cook, stirring until absorbed, about 1 minute.
  4. Add about 2 cups hot tomato mixture to rice; simmer over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until absorbed, 4 to 5 minutes. Continue adding tomato mixture, 1 cup at a time, waiting for one cup to be absorbed before adding the next, stirring occasionally, until rice is creamy and just tender, about 25 minutes total (you may not have to use all the liquid).
  5. Remove pan from heat. Stir in spinach, Parmesan, and butter; season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately (risotto will thicken as it cools), and sprinkle with additional Parmesan, if desired.


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