Roasted Poblano Risotto

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I love food!   It’s always on my mind. What am I going to eat, cook or indulge in today? After learning I was a celiac, my thoughts changed. I went on a strict diet eating fruits, veggies and meat, but I was bored. I felt food deprived and stressed over all of the things I couldn’t eat anymore. I needed to find my passion for food and cooking again. There are so many great foods that are naturally gluten free.

Risotto is gluten free!  Who doesn’t love a creamy risotto?  Now if you are looking for a traditional risotto, this one isn’t it.  I do use the same basic recipe every time I make risotto, but I change it up to match my mood or what ingredients I have on hand.  This recipe combines my two favorite foods, Italian and Tex-Mex. The two cuisines I was desperately missing right now.

I think this marriage of Italian and Tex-Mex come together nicely.  I know it’s not traditional and my Italian ancestors would probably cringe, but this is my twist. If you like a bit more spice in your life, like I do, add 2 poblano peppers instead of one or a few jalapeños.  I usually make some grilled chicken to go with this dish as my husband, Brandon, doesn’t understand having a meal without meat.  I myself am perfectly content with just the risotto.

This dish is also great for guests. It’s a meal you can enjoy because it’s safe to eat and a crowd pleaser for everyone. Risotto always seems so creamy and luxurious to me. Most people don’t realize how easy it is to make.

Make sure to have all of your ingredients chopped and grated prior to beginning.  Trust me this will make your life easier.  That way you can pour yourself a glass of wine, you wouldn’t want the rest of that bottle to go to waste, and pull out a book to read while stirring and waiting for your risotto to finish.

Roasted Poblano Risotto

Serves 2-4 depending on if you use this as a side dish or the main course.

Ingredients

½ large yellow onion chopped

1-2 poblano peppers (add jalapeños for additional heat)

extra virgin olive oil

kosher salt

4-5 cups chicken stock

1 cup arborio rice

2 cups dry white wine

¼ cup freshly grated parmigiano

¼ cup freshly grated pecorino romano

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

1 bunch of cilantro

  1. Roast the poblano(s).  If you have a gas stove I suggest putting the poblanos over the flame until the skin is blackened.  If you don’t have a gas stove you can certainly use your broiler.  Keep a close eye on them in the broiler and flip them once so both sides get charred.  Place the peppers in a sealable plastic bag for about 5 minutes.  This will help with peeling the skins off of the peppers.  Peel the blackened charred skin off and give the peppers a rough chop.  Please adjust the number of peppers used here to your comfortable spice level.  Pablano’s are generally a very mild pepper, but some may contain more heat than others. You can also turn up the heat with some jalapenos, follow the same process you just followed with the poblanos.
  2. Heat the chicken stock in a medium saucepan, keeping it warm the whole time.
  3. Coat a large saucepan with extra virgin olive oil, don’t be stingy. Add the chopped onion with a pinch of salt and let them sweat on medium high heat for roughly 5 minutes.  Add chopped poblanos (jalapeños) and continue sweating for another 3-5 minutes, until the onions have softened.
  4. Add rice to the onions and peppers, stirring occasionally. You want the rice to toast for about 2-3 minutes.
  5. Add the dry white wine, making sure to add enough so that your rice is fully covered. Let cook until rice has absorbed the wine, stirring often.  I suggest drinking the rest while cooking.
  6. Ladle the hot chicken stock over your rice making sure to fully cover it with liquid. Add additional salt.  You’ll want to continue to taste the liquid to ensure you’ve added enough salt throughout this process.  Stir frequently.
  7. As the stock is absorbed you will continue to ladle more over the rice. This process will continue until the rice tastes cooked.  Make sure it still has a slight bite to it.  Don’t forget to stir frequently, preferable in between sipping the remaining wine.
  8. Once your rice has reached the perfect doneness you will remove it from the heat. Add in butter, parmesan and pecorino romano and whisk your risotto until it’s creamy.  This process takes some arm strength and you want to really whisk like your life depended on it!
  9. Add cilantro to garnish and serve. I usually add some to each plate as well.  If you don’t like cilantro you can skip it.
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