My plan for Thursday evening was to come home after work, wash the dishes, make a tasty dinner and do some studying for my DNA/Serology final. What I did instead was come home after work, sit on the couch, surfing the internet and playing WebBoggle for about 2 hours (just one more game...), then get up and wash dishes, and finally, spend about another two hours making tasty, tasty risotto-stuffed portobello mushrooms. By the time dinner was eaten, it was time to get ready for bed. Oops.
Okay, so the risotto. I always make it generally the same way, with minor variations depending on what else is going to be served. I start out by browning the rice a little in some melted butter on the stove. Once it's got a bit of color to it, I dump some white wine or beer (Thursday it was Gordon Biersch Pilsner) into the pan to deglaze. In a separate pan, I saute my vegetables of choice in some olive oil. This time I diced sweet onion, bell peppers (red, yellow and orange, left over from fajita night) and sun-dried tomatoes.
I love making risotto because you get to keep the lid off the pan and just keep stirring and adding liquids until the rice is done. No mystery, no "oops, I burned the bottom," just periodic taste tests and the opportunity to adjust the flavors as desired. When the beer had cooked down almost all the way, I added some tomato soup to the pan. This turned the rice a nice orangey color as it soaked up the tomatoey goodness. After that cooked down, I started in on the vegetable broth. Add a cup or so, let it cook down, add another cup, cook it down, add another cup, etc, etc, until the rice is soft. Depending on the brand of broth, a little added salt may be in order (some broths are way salty on their own, and adding more is just crazy-talk). When the rice is just a little too al dente to eat, then you stir in the vegetables that have been quietly simmering away in the other pan. I always like to dump in a fair bit of parmesan cheese at this point as well.
Once the risotto was ready for eatin, I turned the stove on low and turned the oven to 350 degrees. I got my delicious portobello mushroom caps out of the fridge and prepped them (scrape the innards out with a spoon, scrub down with a damp paper towel, and rub lightly with olive oil). Then into each cap I spread a thin layer of goat cheese before packing them tightly with the risotto. A sprinkling of parmesan on top was the finishing touch, and into the oven they went for 25 minutes. They were delicious. :)