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Spinach and Funky Cheese Risotto

October 27, 2009

You’re not going to believe me, but risotto is a completely doable weeknight meal.  If you have one or two fresh focal ingredients, you probably have everything else you need in the pantry.  Last Wednesday, after I took care of my bacon cravings by typing about them, I still needed to cook something for dinner.  It was getting later and later, meaning time was running out for the potimarron (that night, I mean).  Spinach felt like the quickest thing to prepare.  With the help of my wonderful husband washing the spinach, I went from sitting on  the kitchen floor surrounded by the contents of my pantry to eating a steaming plate of cheesy spinach risotto in under an hour and a half.  (The dishes were done, too!)

Popeye's favorite risotto

Here’s how I do it.  Follow those steps and you, too, can have risotto for dinner tonight.  Really!  Feel free to play around with the flavors – that’s a big part of the fun of risotto.  In addition to spinach, mine featured homemade stock made from guinea hen (found it in the freezer) and this extremely aged Cantal cheese, rind and all, which gave the dish a wonderful, mushroomy flavor.

Yeah, those are cheese mites.

The potimarron, as predicted, wound up in a gratin with some caramelized onions and firm goat’s cheese.  It was served alongside roasted chicken and the mâche dressed in a mustardy vinaigrette.  Nick cooked up some of his famous breakfast potatoes over the weekend, and the apples made great snacks during our Sunday jaunt to Versailles.

Originally published on Seasonal Market Menus.

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