Top 10 reasons to love Risotto

1.  Rice and cheese.  Okay, technically that’s two reasons, but it’s because this dish is a combination of rice and cheese that makes it so ridiculously good.  For those of us that like dishes that combine the two perfect foods of starch and cheese, this is a nice alternative to macaroni and cheese.

2.  This risotto also has butter and peas.  Maybe not exactly fat free, but then again, it’s not supposed to be, which is another reason to love it.

3.  It’s made with wine.  Which means you need to open a bottle of wine.  Which means you stand there, making the risotto, while sipping wine.  It’s the kind of cooking one should do while drinking a glass of wine.  Or two.  What’s not to love.

4.  You can’t rush the process.  And in this world of microwaves and the internet, it’s nice to have something that forces us to slow down, just a little, and enjoy the process.  I love standing over my stove, sipping wine, and creating risotto.  And the results are so worth it.  But with that said, …

5.  You can walk in the door and be serving risotto an hour later.

6.  You can have everything on hand and make it without much planning or forethought.  A lot of the ingredients are non-perishable and others have a long shelf life, so without turning into a paranoid stockpiler, you may already have frozen peas in the freezer, a bottle of wine anywhere, and parmesan cheese in the refrigerator, which means you can make this risotto whenever the urge hits.

7.  It plays well with others.  This goes well with fish, poultry, beef, pork or lamb.  It can be the Boy Wonder side kick to any Batman main dish you serve.

8.  There are many variations and easy substitutes.  Don’t have peas?  You can use asparagus.  Like mushrooms?  Use those.  Leftover veggies?  Toss them in.  The pot of rice can become your own blank canvas if you feel the need to be creative.

9.  My copper risotto pan.  It’s the only copper pan I own, but I do love it.  You can use any large frying pan or saucepan with high edges.

10.  It seems difficult to make and it’s so not.  It seems like something a “chef” would make but it’s easy enough for someone who is just a cook, like me.  Besides the time that’s involved, it’s really very simple but with results that impress.

So, go ahead, make some risotto today and enjoy all the reasons it will make you happy.

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