The temperature has been dropping in the Bay Area. As the morning mist cleared, I decided to prepare comfort food for daughter’s lunch today. I made a decadent risotto flavored with smoked Gouda, a bit of red bell pepper and collard greens. You would pobably never have paired adjectives such as luscious or decadent with healthful collard greens but this rice dish fulfilled my goal.
I got my little toddler to eat her vegetables and I’m delighted to see she actually enjoyed collard greens!
1. Info for Risotto with Collard Greens
- Cook Time: 40 mins
- Total Time: 1 hr 10 mins
- Servings: 6
- Calories: 320 kcal
2. Ingredients for Risotto with Collard Greens
- 8 ounces collard greens, stemmed and finely chopped
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon butter, diced
- 1 shallot, chopped
- 1 clove garlic, finely minced
- 1¼ cups Carnaroli rice (see tips)
- 5 cups warm chicken stock, as needed
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 2 tablespoons red bell pepper, stemmed, seeded and finely chopped
- 6 tablespoons smoked Gouda cheese, cubed
- 2 tablespoons curly parsley, finely chopped
- In a large, deep pan, add 2 tablespoons of oil. When it’s hot, add the garlic. Cook for about 1 minute. Keep the temperature at a high heat. Add butter, let it melt, then add the shallots and cook until fragrant and tender. Add the rice to the pan. Make sure that each grain is coated with oil. Stir until light translucent. Add 3 cups of warm broth. Stir constantly.
- After bringing the liquid to a boil, add the Gouda cheese and lower the heat to medium-low; cook for about 15 to 20 minutes. Season with salt. Check the liquid and periodically add ½ cup to 1 cup of broth (and water if all the broth is used) when all the previous liquid is absorbed. Let simmer for another 15-20 minutes.
- Wash the collard green leaves and basil thoroughly in a large bowl of water in several water baths. Drain, then remove all the excess water using a salad spinner. Roughly chop all the leaves, keeping the basil separate.
- When the rice is almost cooked. Add the collard greens, red bell pepper and ½ cup warm water. Stir well. Check the seasoning and add salt (if necessary). Cover and let simmer for 5 minutes.
- When the rice is ready to be served, add the basil. Check the seasoning one more time and add salt (if necessary) and pepper. Wet the risotto one last time by drizzling with cream. Finish with curly parsley, then stir well. Let sit for about 5 minutes.
- Serve warm.
- Bon appétit!
4. Tips and advices:
- There are many varieties of high-starch rice such as Vialone Nano, Baldo or Arborio rice but the latter is probably the most common for making risotto.
- It’s important to keep adding warm chicken stock as the rice cooks. The key is to add the liquid incrementally and never let the dish dry out, or the rice at the bottom will burn.