We've had a few extremely busy weeks and I feel like a broken record repeating it, but it really has been a wild ride here. Between senior proms, my surgery, soccer tryouts and various other functions, it seems almost impossible to find any time in the kitchen, nonetheless take pictures or write something. I might as well apologize already in advance, because until the middle of June I don't see it getting any better.
To get back to the Proms though, both of them were a rousing success. She looked beautiful to her father and I (and we might be a tiny bit biased on this) and made us both choke up when we realized that our little girl is not so little anymore. The second prom which she attended with her best friend really hit us hard, they all looked so grown up and the little twinge I've been getting in my stomach about her leaving us soon hasn't let up and reality is starting to set in more with each day. Either way, I promised you all a picture, so here it is. Our daughter is the one in the pink dress which fit her personality perfectly and the girl in the yellow is her best friend.
The second thing on my agenda today is to let you all know that I'm participating in an online bake-sale that Becky from "Baking and Cooking, A Tale of Two Loves" is hosting on May 2nd. The bake-sale is going to be in the format of a silent auction and you can bid on some great goodies. Becky is hoping to raise money for a very worthy cause: Relay for Life, that will benefit the American Cancer Society and which she is also participating in. My contribution for this auction will be my Nutella Chocolate Cookies. The highest bidder will be able to pick their choice of bittersweet, semisweet, milk chocolate or white chocolate chips to customize the cookies to their taste. I hope you'll hop on over and check out all of the goodies up for auction and support a great cause that is very near and dear to my heart as well. My own daughter is actually participating in one of the Relay's for Life in our home state and will be walking in honor of her Opa, my dad, who passed away from cancer a few years ago.
Trying to bring this hodge podge of a blog post back to food isn't going to be very easy or eloquently, but here it goes, just pretend I'm doing a fine job. This Lemon Risotto with Peas has been in my recipe files for several years and it truly is perfect for, well Spring. I found this recipe in a Light and Tasty Magazine and besides the fact that it is actually somewhat healthy, it also tastes great. If you've ever cooked a risotto, you know that they are not hard, but they do take a little bit time and quite some stirring. This risotto has a wonderful bright taste from additions of white wine, lemon juice and lemon zest, but also a creaminess that only a well cooked risotto produces, along with the sweetness of peas and the nuttiness of freshly grated Parmesan. I usually serve this risotto alongside grilled salmon, but chicken or even lamb are just as tasty. If you enjoy a good risotto with a nice lemony flavor this is definitely a great recipe to try.
Lemon Risotto with Peas
~makes 8 servings~
5 to 5 1/2 cups chicken broth
2 shallots, finely chopped
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups uncooked Arborio rice
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/3 cup white wine
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 cup frozen peas, thawed
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 1/2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
In a medium saucepan, heat broth and keep warm.
In a large nonstick skilled, saute shallots in butter for 2-3 minutes or until tender. Add the rice, thyme and pepper; cook and stir for 2-3 minutes. Stir in wine and lemon juice. Cook and stir until all of the liquid is absorbed.
Stir in heated broth, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring constantly. Allow liquid to absorb between additions. Cook just until risotto is creamy and rice is almost tender. Total cooking time is about 20 minutes.
Add the peas, Parmesan cheese and lemon peel; cook and stir until heated through. Serve immediately.
Adapted from: Light and Tasty Magazine