Last night, I went in autopilot while doing the prep work for this week’s French Fridays with Dorie recipe. All week long, I had rationalized the recipe as “risotto with a splash of cream”. Chicken stock fortified with vegetable bouillon simmered in the back burner, onions and garlic sautéed in a large shallow pan… and then I decided to look at the recipe.
Uh-oh. This wasn’t the sauté, ladle, stir routine ingrained in my brain. The stock went up to a boil, and I grimaced as I poured the rice into the pot. Arborio rice is pretty forgiving, and after twenty minutes, the rice looked creamy/starchy – like almost like ‘real’ risotto. Up to that point, it also tasted pretty good. After folding in the spinach, onion, and garlic, I was almost convinced this would be okay after all – risotto with “less” work. Parmesan cheese and cream went in, and after one last stir we sat down for dinner. Eduardo declared it tasty, but I was thrown off by the texture.
Although adding cream to the rice seemed intriguing on paper, I don’t think I would do this recipe again as written. An alternate method would be to sauté the onion and garlic in butter, toast the rice with the aromatics, add the boiling stock and cook until done, and then stir in the wilted spinach, cheese, and butter.
The rice was the side dish for boneless 1-inch thick pork chops quick-marinated in an oregano, garlic, red wine vinegar, olive oil and salt/white pepper paste thrown together in the food processor. The chops cooked in about a tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat while the rice simmered.
The Creamy, Cheesy, Garlicky Rice with Spinach was this week’s chosen recipe for French Fridays with Dorie, an online cooking group working its way through Dorie Greenspan’s Around My French Table. Check out how the rest of the home cooks did with this recipe here!