Vegetable Risotto with Dill

Spring has sprung and the weather was a barmy 24° on Saturday and Sunday.  My friend and I decided it was a good time to leave the city and go away for the night.  On Saturday we did some short bush walks across the west coast of Tasmania then on Sunday we hired toboggans and headed for some sand dunes.  At the end of our trip I’m fairly sure I had half morphed into the sandman, with tiny grains of sand lodged into every pore on my white pasty body.  But the laughs and the tumbles were worth every penny.

I love when the weather warms up.  There is always an expectation or excitement in the air.  My expectations were exceeded this weekend with a lovely meal I enjoyed at a local cafe in the small town where we stayed.  With not many options of places to eat we decided to go to a place called the Bushman’s Bar & Cafe.  With a name like that I was expecting nothing but steak on the menu, and preparing myself to have yet Another large serving of hot potato chips as my main.  I was however pleasantly surprised, after a quick discussion with the staff about my dietary requirements the chef said it would be no problem to whip up something separate.  What I got was possibly one of the tastiest risottos I had ever had, topped with crunchy spinach leaves.  I doubt I’ll ever have it again because it wasn’t on the menu.  I did however send many compliments to the chef and let’s hope that they’ll consider having something gluten free, vegetarian and dairy free on the menu.  I do wish more places would consider at least one option.

Last night I whipped up a risotto in memory of the sunny weekend because now it’s overcast, using one of northern Europe’s favorite herbs, Dill.risotto 1

Vegetable Risotto with Dill Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups of risotto rice
  • 1 medium brown onion (finely chopped)
  • 1 heaped tablespoon of minced garlic
  • 3 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
  • 30g of nuttalex
  • 4 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1/2 red capsicum (finely chopped)
  • 2 carrots (finely chopped)
  • 1 celery stalk (finely chopped)
  • 3 1/2 cups of massels chicken stock
  • 1 tablespoon of tomato paste
  • 2g of fresh dill (roughly chopped)
  • 1 end of a sping onion (finely sliced)
  • salt and pepper to taste

Let’s Cook!

  • In a medium size saucepan heat nuttalex and 2 tablespoons of olive oil on medium heat
  • Once nuttalex has melted saute brown onion and garlic till onion is soft and garlic is fragrant, add dill and stir for another 2 mins
  • Next add rice, apple cider vinegar and 1 cup of stock, stirring continually over a low heat until liquid is nearly absorbed into the rice
  • Then add carrot, celery, capsicum and spring onion with another 1 1/2 cups of stock, stirring continually till liquid is nearly absorbed
  • Lastly add remaining stock, tomato paste and lemon juice and 2 table spoons of olive oil
  • Stirring until the last of the stock is absorbed into the rice
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Apple cider vinegar can be replaced with white wine, plus cooking with wine is nearly always more fun!

risotto 2

Health and Happiness,

Katri x

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Broccoli and Quinoa Salad

It has been a few crazy weeks with University, kids and looking for work.  I have been cooking but haven’t found time to sit down and post.  It could have something to do with this television and social media addiction I seem to have developed.  Forget hard drugs, what’s the government going to do about the masses of us sitting on our bottoms watching mind numbing rubbish for hours on end to “relax”, I suppose that’s where they want us, not causing a fuss.  I have decided like a many other addicts to take control of my own detox program and limit myself to only one show a week.. Because there is this one show I just can’t live without.

While binging on TV I did manage to catch a fun series on super foods.  It was very interesting, wheat-grass shots for example (yippee we don’t have to force those down anymore) are really just a fad and have little health benefits, but still better then a can of coke.  There were some sure winners among the bunch and two of those included were broccoli (yes it really is a super super food) and quinoa.

So here’s a great way to include these super foods as a healthy side to all your meals.broccoli salad plate 1

Broccoli and Quinoa Salad Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon of Massels beef stock
  • 1 cup of quinoa
  • 1 teaspoon of pink rock salt
  • 2 cups of water
  • 1 head of broccoli (cut into chunks)
  • 1/2 a medium red onion (finely sliced) broccoli salad bowl

Salad Dressing Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon of brown sugar
  • 4 tablespoons of white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon of lemon juice

Let’s Cook!

  • Steam broccoli lightly for 5-8 mins, set aside
  •  In a small saucepan combine, quinoa, stock, salt and water, bring to the boil and simmer for 10-15 mins till the quinoa is cooked, drain any remaining water, although it should all be adsorbed.
  • in a separate bowl, toss the broccoli and red onion through the quinoa.

Dressing 

  • Combine the vinegar, brown sugar and lemon juice, mixing until the sugar has dissolved
  • Pour over the broccoli, quinoa and onion mixture

I had mine with bean rissoles!broccoli salad plate 2

Health and Happiness,

Katri x