It is Fast Friday again and time for another fast and fabulous dinner suggestion. If you are anything like me, by the time Friday rolls around the last thing you want to do to cook a big meal yet we all still have to eat. The dishes featured in this series aren’t necessarily fancy but they bring together simple ingredients most people already have in their pantries or have easy access to and allow you to put a real meal on the table in between 30 and 45 minutes. Enjoy and if you have your own fast recipes you want to share, please send them my way and I will in turn share them with all of my readers.
What better way to wrap up a long and cold week than with a warm and comforting bowl of risotto? For me, this risotto, from Maxine Clark’s Risotto epitomizes what comfort food means. The combination of gorgonzola and ricotta cheeses ensures that the dish is creamy and cheesy without being overpowering. Be sure to taste and buy a gorgonzola cheese you like. Not all are created equal and you want to be sure that the cheese you choose isn’t overpowering or two pungent. The cheeses are only complemented by the earthy fried sage leaves. Some people look at risotto as a side dish. But for me, this dish is so satisfying that it is a meal unto itself.
GORGONZOLA & RICOTTA RISOTTO w/ CRISPY SAGE LEAVES
30 sage leaves with stems
1/2 cup vegetable, for frying
6 cups hot vegetable broth
8 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 onion, finely chopped
2 cups risotto rice
1/3 cup dry white wine
1 tablespoons fresh sage leaves, chopped
3/4 cup Gorgonzola cheese, crumbled
3/4 cup fresh ricotta cheese
Salt & pepper for seasoning
For the fried sage leaves:
- Throughly dry the sage leaves.
- Heat the oil in a heavy bottomed skillet until it reaches 350 degrees on a thermometer.
- When the oil is hot, drop in the sage leaves and fry until crisp; it should only take a few minutes.
- Remove the leaves from the oil using a slotted spoon and drain on a paper towel lined plate. Season with sea salt and set aside.
For the risotto:
- Keep the broth at a low simmer in a saucepan set over medium-low heat.
- Melt half of the butter in a large, heavy stock pot set over medium heat.
- Add the onion and cook until soft and golden, about 10 minutes.
- Add the rice and stir well until coated with the melted butter.
- Pour in the wine and boil hard until the liquid has reduced and has almost disappeared. Stir in the chopped fresh sage.
- Begin adding the broth, by the ladle full, stirring gently with each addition and cooking until most of the liquid has been absorbed by the rice before adding more. Do not let the rice dry out.
- When half of the broth has been absorbed, add in the gorgonzola cheese and stir until it has completely melted.
- Continue adding the broth and cooking until the rice is creamy and tender but the grains are still firm. This should take about 15 to 20 minutes.
- Season well with salt and pepper and stir in the ricotta cheese and remaining butter.
- Remove from the heat and let sit for two minutes. Add additional broth if necessary to loosen the rice.
- Serve topped with the crispy sage leaves.
- Serves 4