Parmesan Risotto

So today is Buffet of Grains! We made Bulgar wheat, Quinoa, Couscous, Risotto, and Wild Rice. Yum! My 1st pd. kids ate every bite and loved it all! Their fave was the risotto, so I thought I would put this recipe up first. The couscous and wild rice recipes are so simple I probably won’t post them here, but I will post the other two later on. Like, tomorrow.

So risotto, like the white potato, kind of gets a bad rap. This recipe doesn’t use any milk or cream, and only 1/4 c. Parmesan cheese (which adds about 100 calories). So why so creamy, you may wonder?

Risotto is the name of the finished dish. Like, lasagna. Risotto is made with arborio rice. Arborio rice is a short-grained, FAT, Italian rice. It is VERY starchy, and the “creaminess” is actually due to the starch that is released during cooking. Arborio rice would make a FAB rice pudding.

This is a fantastic, basic risotto. You could saute any veggies you have on hand instead of the corn/red pepper/peas combo. You could double the veggies to make more (and even lighter) risotto.

The reason risotto can be a pain is because of the stirring process while cooking. The liquid  needs to be added GRADUALLY for the rice to cook properly. Gradually and with constant stirring. Mas importante. The girls in my first period yellow kitchen ROCKED this risotto this morning, which is another reason I am putting this recipe up!




3 tbsp. olive oil

 1/3 c. corn

 ¼ c. red pepper, chopped

 1/3 c. peas

 48 oz. can chicken broth, heated

 1 lb. Risotto

 ½ c. grated Parmesan cheese

 1/8 tsp. black pepper




16 oz! 1 pound.


Pour 1 tbsp. olive oil in pot on medium heat.

Add corn and chopped red pepper.


Cook about five minutes, stirring frequently.

Remove the vegetables from the pot into a bowl; set aside.

Add remaining (2 tbsp.) olive oil to the pot.

Add risotto and stir until evenly coated with oil. Here you can keep stirring for about 3 minutes. The rice will “toast” and the flavor will develop.  

Meanwhile, have your broth heating up (either microwave it or have a saucepan heating nearby).

Add the heated broth a cup at a time, stirring continuously. Maintain a slow boil and add rest of the broth (a little at a time), while stirring continuously.



When all the liquid is added, feel free to taste the rice to see if it is “al dente”. Al Dente means “to the tooth” in Italian, and it is how risotto should be served. It means there will be a slight “bite” inside each grain.


Add vegetables during this last cooking time.

Stir in cheese and black pepper.

 Taste for seasoning. 



The risotto will be more liquidy, like this, when it is very very hot. After it sits for a minute, it will look like this:

Here is the whole gang! Quinoa and Bulgar wheat recipes tomorrow!

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