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Risotto With Pancetta, Spinach And Goat Cheese

RisaG's picture
This is a very creamy recipe, without any cream. It also has delicious additional elements such as Pancetta and Goat Cheese, it is sprinkled with parmesan at the last moment and serve hot!
Ingredients
  Salt To Taste
  Pepper To Taste
  Olive oil 1 Tablespoon
  Chopped garlic 1 Tablespoon (3 large cloves)
  Crushed red pepper 1⁄2 Teaspoon
  Coarsely chopped spinach 1⁄2 Pound
  Thinly sliced pancetta 1⁄2 Cup (8 tbs), thinly sliced
  Chopped onion 1 Large
  Halved grape tomatoes 2 Cup (32 tbs)
  Cooked basic risotto 4 Cup (64 tbs)
  Balsamic vinegar 2 Tablespoon
  Crumbled goat cheese 3⁄4 Cup (12 tbs)
  Grated parmesan cheese 3⁄4 Cup (12 tbs), freshly grated
  Chicken broth 1 1⁄2 Cup (24 tbs)
  Chopped parsley 1⁄4 Cup (4 tbs)
  Julienned fresh basil 2 Tablespoon
Directions

Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a large saute pan over MED heat. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes. Saute until the garlic begins to brown. Add the spinach and cover. Saute for 2 minutes, remove cover and season with salt and pepper. Heat the remaining oil in a large saucepan over MED-HIGH heat. Add the pancetta and cook until crispy (only a couple of minutes so watch it carefully). Add the onion and saute until it gets translucent, about 4-5 minutes. Strain off excess oil. Add tomatoes, risotto, vinegar, parmesan, goat cheese and broth. Simmer until risotto thickens. Toss in spinach, parsley, basil and serve immediately.

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Serving Ideas : salad

NOTES : For added richness, add a pat of butter in at the last moment, before adding spinach and herbs.

You can cook the pancetta and onions ahead of time if you wish. It makes this dish go faster if you do.

To cook risotto, saute a bit of onion in oil. Add arborio rice and coat it well with the oil. Add chicken broth in 1/2 cupfuls and cook, stirring often, until it evaporates. Add more broth and cook it the same way and keep doing this until the rice is no longer chalky when you test it. It should be fully cooked and soft. Add a touch of butter, let it melt in, and saute for another few minutes. This should make basic risotto. Do not make this beforehand, like the spinach and onions. It must be cooked right as you are putting together dinner. It can not be prepped beforehand. Risotto is a last-minute dish.

Recipe Summary

Difficulty Level: 
Medium
Cuisine: 
Italian
Course: 
Main Dish
Taste: 
Savory
Feel: 
Creamy
Method: 
Saute
Ingredient: 
Rice
Interest: 
Gourmet
Preparation Time: 
25 Minutes
Cook Time: 
30 Minutes
Ready In: 
0 Minutes
Servings: 
4
Story
I adapted this from the Harry Caray Cookbook, one of the Road Food books by Michael and Jane Stern. This is just delicious. Not hard to do but has several steps.
Subtitle: 
Risotto with Pancetta, Spinach and Goat Cheese

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