Mushroom risotto with tarragon cream sauce

mushroom-tarragon-risottoAs previously mentioned and evidenced by the number of recent risotto postings, I am a bit obsessed with risotto. Even though I made it just last weekend, I tried a new recipe last night. With the dramatic dip in temperatures, I was craving some comfort food and this fit the bill perfectly.

I borrowed the recipe for cream sauce from Real Simple, adapting it to not use the onions, but this sauce is AMAZING and light and would go well over many types of vegetables or fish.

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Easy, homemade croutons

When faced with leftover bread that’s gone stale and no longer good enough to eat on its own, one must not worry! The easiest thing you can do is turn it into croutons which no doubt will be better than anything you can buy at the store.

You can customize your own flavor and season as much or as little as you like to get the exact flavor you want. If you have 20 minutes, you can make these in time to serve with your dinner salad. Easy peasy, done and done. Use to garnish your salad or soup of choice!

Ingredients

  • Bread (leftover baguettes work fantastic)
  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil
  • Seasoning of choice (herbs de provence, garlic, rosemary, thyme, etc.)
  • Salt

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350
  • Slice the bread into ½ inch cubes
  • Toss in a bowl with the olive oil until the bread is well coated
  • Sprinkle in your seasoning and a few pinches of salt, continue to mix until the bread is well coated
  • Spread the croutons on a cookie sheet and toast in the oven for 10-15 minutes, ensuring to mix and turn at least twice so the croutons get an even color on all sides.

croutons

Caramelized onion and apple risotto

onion-apple-risottoI have a confession to make: I am a bit obsessed with risotto. I love everything about it – the process of making it, all the ingredients that go into it and not least of all, eating it. I love it because it’s versatile and is a dish you can eat year-round, customizing to ingredients and flavors that are in season. It can be made to appeal to any diet preference as well – it works wonderfully with light seafood such as scallops or shrimp and is a great vehicle to highlight seasonal vegetables.

Forever on the hunt for the next awesome flavor profile, I decided that caramelized onions and apples sounded like a good idea to try. I know what you’re thinking – there’s already plenty of onion in the base of risotto, won’t this be overkill? I was worried about that too, but I did it anyway and was glad I took the risk. Caramelizing the onions gives them a different flavor, so this wasn’t overkill with onion. You’re also only going to use a half cup of the onions, so you’ll have some leftover. (Looking for what to do with them? Try this crostini recipe.)

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