Music: Aram Khachaturian, “Spartacus” – a little classical for this classy meal
Menu: Kale “chips” as an appetizer and then this yummy risotto!
For those of you who have never seen a zucchini plant, it produces these beautiful orange flowers. I first learned that you could eat them from a woman that I play volleyball with. She is originally from Mexico and told me about flower quesadillas, which are the most amazing things you will ever eat. I mentioned that I was growing a zucchini plant and she got really intense and said, YOU MUST EAT THE FLOWER.
Then I came across the entry from the NYT blog, Bitten – perfecto! Most classic recipes call for stuffing and frying the flower, which is all good and fine, but just for a flower?? I wanted something simple and basic so that I could taste the flower and savor eating the most beautiful part of my massive plant.
And what a perfect snack as the risotto cooks – kale chips! They are wonderful little things. Crunchy and full of flavor. I recommend making some for the week. I always get cravings for crunchy, salty snacks. If I haven’t packed nuts to munch on, it usually means a potato chip run after lunch But with these on hand, I’m getting my fix, plus some nutrients with it!
Adapted from Bitten, NYT food blog
- 3 TB butter, divided
- 1 bunch green onions, chopped
- 2 – 3 cloves garlic, chopped
- S & P
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 2 cups of Arborio rice
- 6 – 8 cups chicken stock, simmering
- 3 – 4 fresh squash blossoms
- 2 handfuls parmigiano-reggiano cheese
- Heat large skillet to medium-high heat and melt 2 TB butter.
- Add green onions and saute until lightly browned. Add garlic and saute until fragrant (30 seconds – 1 minute).
- Add Arborio rice and cook and stir until grains become translucent, about 2 minutes. Season with S & P.
- Increase heat to high and carefully add wine. Reduce back to medium-high after a minute or so. Let wine cook down, until the liquid almost evaporates. Begin adding chicken stock in 1/2 – 1 cup increments, stirring every couple of minutes, and let each batch cook down until you need to add more.
- When stock is about halfway gone, add flowers. Continue with liquid.
- When stock is gone or rice is cooked (no bite to grain) to a creamy consistency, add cheese and remaining TB of butter, stirring to incorporate.
- Serve immediately!
Adapted from various sources, just google it…
- 1 bunch kale
- Kosher salt
- Preheat oven to 250.
- Wash and dry leaves. Cut the tough stem out of the middle of each leaf and tear into chip and bite-sized pieces.
- Toss kale with EVOO and kosher salt.
- Transfer to baking sheets in one single layer and flatten.
- Bake for 25 – 35 mintues, depending on flatness of leaf. Keep an eye on them!! If they burn they can taste a little chalky, but if they don’t cook enough they are a little chewy!