Last week we had some very unusual weather for summer time here in the hot and sticky South, a week of cool wet weather that was a lovely taste of fall to come. I had planned on making a salad for dinner but with the brisk air I really wanted something warm so I took a riff on Jamie Oliver's wonderful mushroom risotto. In that recipe he cooks mushrooms in the rice and then tops it with more that are sauteed and tossed with herbs and lemon juice. It's an amazing dish and the depth of flavors is so wonderful. I looked at what I had on hand...lots of lovely summer veggies from my local farmer's market...and came up with this...and it was absolutely delicious! How could I not share it with you?! I admit that the quantities are approximations because I never measure when I cook this type of thing, but I think they're pretty close. If you make it, do let me know what you think!
Farmer’s Market Summer Veggie Risotto
3 nice heirloom tomatoes
2 tsp fresh thyme, leaves only
1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar
2 Tablespoons olive oil
4 med to small size yellow squash, diced
2 large Italian frying peppers or one medium red pepper, diced
1 small onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon of fresh thyme (remove tough stems)
pinch of cayenne pepper
1 cup arborio rice
1/2 cup white wine
5-6 cups (homemade is best) chicken or vegetable stock
Core and seed the tomatoes and then dice them and put them in a bowl, mixing in the thyme leaves, vinegar, and salt to taste. Set aside.
Have your stock simmering on the stove when you start this so you can add it hot as you go. Heat the olive oil in a large pot and then add the first five ingredients. Saute these for about 5 to 7 minutes on med high heat to allow some of the moisture to cook out. Add the rice, thyme, and cayenne pepper and saute for another minute and then add the wine. When most of that has cooked in, add a cup of chicken stock and salt and pepper to taste. Stir constantly so the starch will cook out, adding stock as needed until the rice is cooked to your liking and you have a creamy consistency, about 20 minutes.
Ladle into bowls and top with some of the fresh tomato mixture.
...well maybe just one doll....