I’ve noticed a trend lately of risotto like dishes that skip the traditional main ingredient of Arborio rice. In restaurants I’ve seen creamy orzo cooked down with greens. The blogs and Pinterest fill with barley or quinoa options. In my eyes risotto is a creamy rice dish, slowly simmered with broth and/or wine, onions and other veggies. But really, why does it have to be rice? I’m sure there’s history to the meal, and many of my Italian friends might be jumping through their computer screen, ready to strangle me. How dare I even for a moment consider altering the perfectly classic dish? How could I possibly make it better? I never claimed better, just different. Food is meant to evolve, to be played with. So today, I’m playing with risotto.
I’m sure by now you’ve heard of Quinoa and its magical powders–the newest super food. This whole grain is a seed derived from a plant closely related to spinach. It provides an excellent source of protein, fiber and calcium. And best of all? It’s tasty! I love the little bit of crunchiness, the texture really adds dimension to any dish.