Saturday, January 25, 2014


This a recipe from the Pioneer Woman, Ree Drummond.  It was my first attempt at Risotto and I was scared to do it.  I've heard horror stories about gummy risotto or undercooked risotto.  I followed her recipe almost exactly.  I reduced the amount of cheese she added, but other than that it is very much the same.
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 1 T. butter
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 lb. Arborio rice
  • 8 C. chicken stock
  • 1 C. Parmesan, Romano, or Asiago cheese (or a mixture of all three)
  • 1 C. heavy cream
  • 2 T. chives, chopped
  • 1 t. kosher salt
  • ½ t. black pepper
  1. Add the chicken stock to a medium size pot and place over medium heat until the stock comes to a boil.
  2. Heat a large skillet over medium-low heat and add the olive oil and butter.
  3. Add the onions and sauté for about 10 minutes or until translucent.
  4. Add the garlic and cook for one minute.
  5. Add the Arborio rice and stir to coat the rice thoroughly. Adding 1 C. at a time, add the 8 C. of chicken stock, stirring frequently.
  6. As soon as it appears that the rice has absorbed each helping of broth, add in the next helping. This process will take at least 20 minutes. Rice is done when it no longer has a hard bite.
  7. When the rice is done, add in the heavy cream, cheese, chives, salt, and pepper.
  8. Heat through and serve hot.
Tips and Tricks:
  • This is a slow process.  Don’t try to rush it.  Allow each cup of chicken stock to fully absorb before adding the next cup to the skillet.
  • This is the base for risotto, but be creative and add what you like to mix: sundried tomatoes, artichoke hearts, capers, asparagus, etc.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Something Special Party Nuts

These party nuts are the perfect combination of spicy, sweet, and salty.  It is a great addition to cocktail hour or even just a special afternoon treat!
  • 1 C. pecan halves
  • 1 C. whole cashews
  • 1 C. walnut halves
  • 1 C. almonds
  • ¼ t. ground cumin
  • ¼ t. ground cinnamon
  • ¼ t. garlic powder
  • ¼ t. onion powder
  • ¼ t. black pepper
  • ½ t. chili powder
  • ½ t. cayenne pepper
  • ½ C. white sugar
  • ¼ C. water
  • ¼ C. (1/2 stick) butter
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Line a cookie sheet with foil or parchment paper.
  3. Place all of the nuts in a big bowl and sprinkle all of the spices over the nuts.
  4. In a sauce pan, combine the sugar, water and butter over medium heat.  When the mixture comes to a boil, cook for one minute and the remove from the heat.
  5. Pour the mixture over the nuts and stir well.
  6. Pour the nuts onto the cookie sheet and spread them out into a single layer.
  7. Bake for 10 minutes and then remove and stir the nuts until all are covered with the syrup.
  8. Return to the oven and bake for 6 minutes and then remove and allow to cool before serving.
Tips and Tricks:
  • You can use any type of nuts you like.  I buy the can of mixed nuts and use it.