Sunday, March 13, 2011

birthday dinner party

it was my best friend's birthday recently and she asked for risotto. every time i make this recipe, it turns out fabulous. i'm going to give jamie oliver all of the credit here. isn't he also known as the naked chef? i realized while writing this that i had no idea why! so... i googled it. apparently it's the name of a show he does in the uk. the idea behind the naked chef is stripping food down to it's bare essentials proving you don't need a lot of ingredients for a tasty fare. funny because i don't believe his risotto recipe would fit into that category. i add white truffle oil at the end- but that's totally up to you. i served the risotto with a roasted salmon wrapped in swiss chard. it was a hit.
on another note, jamie oliver has done some pretty impressive things lately. check out his website on the food revolution. 

risotto bianco with asparagus

2 pints stock (vegetable, chicken or fish)
2 tbl olive oil
dollop of butter
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 head celery, finely chopped
2 c risotto (arborio rice)
2 wineglasses of dry white wine
asparagus, cut in 1-2 in pieces
5 tbl butter
2 tbl white truffle oil
4 oz. parmesan cheese

1. heat the stock and set aside. put olive oil and butter in a sauce pan, add onion, garlic and celery. cook for 15 min slowly on low-medium heat.
2. once veggies are softened, add the rice and turn up the heat. fry rice for a minute. add wine and keep stirring allowing alcohol to cook off.
3. add a ladle of stock and a pinch of salt. turn heat down to a simmer stirring occasionally. keep adding ladlefuls of stock and stirring until rice is cooked. this should take between 15-30 minutes. add asparagus in last 5 minutes of cooking.
4. remove from heat and add 5 tbl butter, 2 tbl white truffle oil and parmesan.

adapted from jamie oliver

roasted salmon wrapped in swiss chard

2 tbl unsalted butter, room temperature
2 tbl fresh tarragon, finely chopped
2 tsp grated lemon zest, plus 1 tbl lemon juice
4 leaves swiss chard
4 (6-8 oz each) salmon fillets

1. bring a saucepan of salted water to boil. cook swiss chard in water until tender (about 4 minutes). use tongs to remove and lay flat on a foil lined baking sheet.
2. combine butter, tarragon, lemon zest and salt and pepper in a small bowl.
3. place one fillet on top of a leaf, near tip; repeat with remaining fillets. sprinkle fish with lemon juice. spread butter mixture over each fillet and wrap leaf around tucking the stalk underneath. roast in oven at 400 degrees for 12 minutes.

adapted from martha stewart

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