Here’s a risotto based on the much beloved "Mediterranean grandmotherly" combination of artichokes and spinach. Flecked with bits of tomato, it makes a very pretty presentation. Garlic bread would be great on the side. Recipe adapted from Mediterranean Grains and Greens by Paula Wolfert (Harper-Collins, 1998).
- 2 large artichokes
- 1 lemon half
- 2 Tbs. all-purpose flour
- 2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 6 cups vegetable broth
- 2 Tbs. olive oil
- 2 Tbs. finely chopped onion
- 1 medium clove garlic, finely chopped
- 1 lb. spinach, stemmed, rinsed well and finely shredded
- 1 cup uncooked Arborio rice
- 1/4 cup dry white wine
- 1 medium tomato, peeled, seeded and diced
- 1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
- 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- Bring medium saucepan of water to a boil. Meanwhile, prepare artichoke bottoms: Cut off top two-thirds of artichoke; snap off loose outer leaves around base, then cut off stem. Using melon baller, scoop out fuzzy choke in center. Pare any remaining hard green parts. Rub with lemon half as you work to prevent browning. Repeat with remaining artichoke.
- Add flour, lemon juice and salt to boiling water; whisk well until combined. Add artichoke bottoms, reduce heat to low and simmer 5 minutes. Drain and cool, then thinly slice. Set aside.
- In large saucepan, bring broth and 5 cups water to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low and maintain gentle simmer.
- In another large, heavy saucepan, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring often, until tender, about 3 minutes.
- Add artichokes, garlic and half of spinach and cook, stirring, until spinach wilts and liquid is absorbed, about 3 minutes. Add rice, stirring to coat, and cook, stirring 1 minute.
- Increase heat to medium-high, add wine and cook, stirring, until liquid is absorbed, about 30 seconds.
- Add 1 cup of simmering broth mixture and cook, stirring, until liquid is absorbed. Repeat with remaining broth mixture, 1 cup at a time, adding more only when rice has almost absorbed liquid. (You may not need all the broth mixture.)
- When rice mixture has cooked about 30 minutes, stir in tomato, remaining spinach and pepper. Cook and stir until rice is slightly creamy and just tender, about 5 to 10 minutes.
- Stir in half of Parmesan and adjust seasoning. Remove from heat and let stand 5 minutes. Serve sprinkled with remaining Parmesan.
- Serving Size: Serves 3 to 4
- Calories: 421
- Carbohydrate Content: 56 g
- Cholesterol Content: 5 mg
- Fat Content: 6 g
- Fiber Content: 6 g
- Protein Content: 15 g
- Saturated Fat Content: 2 g
- Sodium Content: 771 mg