Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Colleen 1-?, Natalie 0-2

I would love to call Colleen Patrick-Goudreau a thief, but I'm pretty sure The Vegan Table came out ever so slightly before I dreamt up my Mediterranean Risotto (AKA complete failure after two honest attempts). Regardless of who thought of it first, she got it right - tonight I made Arborio Rice with Roasted Red Peppers, Pine Nuts, and Basil and it was everything I wanted my stupid risotto to be. It smelled a lot like mine when it finished cooking, causing momentary panic that it would be too strong, but it wasn't.

Differences between our two skillet risottos (her name's too damn long):

Hers: Roasted red peppers
Mine: Roasted yellow peppers

Hers: chopped kalamatas and green olives
Mine: too many chopped kalamatas

Hers: skillet-toasted pine nuts
Mine: sun-dried tomatoes

Just a few subtle differences that make one edible and the other an event to muddle through or else you won't have dinner. I shouldn't be so disparaging: Colleen's skillet risotto is way beyond edible - it's delicious. The toasted pine nuts add this amazing rich, buttery flavor and balance out the saltiness of the olives, which they equal in quantity. I used Arborio rice, as the title might suggest, and if it didn't have such a bizarre texture, I would use it all the time - it cooks even faster than Jasmine rice! The texture, though, is almost like very al dente pasta, which is fine for penne but I prefer rice to munch like rice.

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