Monday, August 17, 2009

Pesto Risotto and Grilled Baby Patty Pans

For dinner yesterday, I tried out something new: Pesto Risotto and Grilled Baby Patty Pans. The baby patty pans are about 1 to 2 inches in diameter and can be grilled or baked whole. The Pesto Risotto does not use up a lot of garden produce itself, but it is a very complementary side dish to grilled or roasted veggies.

Pesto Risotto:

1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 cups rice (risotto is traditionally made with Arborio rice, but regular long grain white rice also works)
6 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1/3 cup Pesto
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Fresh ground black pepper

Saute the chopped onion in the olive oil in a 6 quart sauce pan until translucent and slightly brown. In the mean time heat the broth in the microwave or in a separate sauce pan. Add rice and one cup broth to the onions. Stir. When the liquid is bubbly and nearly absorbed, add another 1/2 cup broth and stir. Repeat, stirring frequently, until all of the broth has been incorporated into the rice (about 20 minutes). The rice should be tender and the mixture creamy. Stir in the Parmesan Cheese, Pesto, and black pepper, serve.

Baby Patty Pans:

12 Baby Patty Pan squash
1 tablespoon olive oil
salt and pepper

Wash and trim the squash. Toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Grill on the top rack of a hot grill for about 20 minutes, turning once, until the squash are tender. Serve with Pesto Risotto.

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