Tag Archives: leek

yet another risotto

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Actually, that’s unfair, because we haven’t had a risotto in ages. But we did last night.

We bought a pack of chicken thighs in Aldi last week. Pete manfully skinned and filleted them on Saturday, and they’ve been stowed in the freezer (yes, for this was just *before* PumpkinGate) for stir fries or whatever; the cats had the skin, with much enjoyment but no gratitude *at all*, and I slung the bones in the baby slow cooker with some water, with a view to soup making. But then, after the Graet Pumpkin War of 2014, soup was already well over-catered, and I couldn’t freeze this stock either.

I reboiled the bones yesterday, and it made a lovely gelatinous stock. Which seemed absolutely ideal for a risotto, especially as there were little shreds of chicken as well. So I strained the bones out, and rinsed them off with boiling water, to get every drop of chickeny goodness from them, and then topped that up to a pint*.

Sliced a leek and a red pepper, and set them to saute off in a little olive oil and butter. Then added 5oz of Arborio rice and stirred it round to coat it, and then started adding the stock bit by bit, stirring all the time. During the process, I discovered that making risotto is yet another thing that doesn’t go with  watching Borgen with subtitles; no wonder it’s taking me so long to get through it. I digress.

When about 75% of the stock was added, I seasoned with salt and black pepper, and when all the stock was absorbed, I added half a block of feta cheese and stirred until it was melted.

And I can tell you that, although a bowl of risotto in those quantities (we halved it, obviously) doesn’t look much, it’s plenty, and it was delicious.

 

*This is one of the few recipes I still cook in imperial – easier to remember the mantra of 1 pint / 5 oz.

a chicken pie

(I said it was a busy weekend).

The last of last weekend’s roast chicken was languishing in a bowl in the fridge, and the weather forecast was Not Nice. So we decided that A Pie was called for.

Due to the unexpected trip to Lakeland, I started the filling in the tiny slow cooker before I went out. In went two chopped rashers of back bacon, about 30g of finely diced chorizo (oh, chorizo, how I love thee), a chopped leek, and about half a punnet of tired chestnut mushrooms. A small glug of olive oil, a grate of black pepper, some fresh thyme, and I set it on low, and went to Beverley. I’m getting so much use out of that thing, I just love it. I want a medium slow cooker now, but I really don’t think I have anywhere to keep it 🙁

There was a gorgeous smell when we returned! Once the cake baking marathon was over, I transferred the mix to a deep frying pan, added the chicken and warmed it through. And then, while warding off the Senior Cats, I added about two or three tablespoons of plain flour and cooked that off, and then just enough milk to make a sauce. No idea how much, just until it was right.

Pete manfully rolled out the puff pastry (which came from the freezer – I’m not that daft), and we ate it with mashed swede and carrot, and very nice it was too. And we were so hungry I forgot to photograph it, but I will do so when we have reheated the other half for tomorrow’s supper.

pork with leeks, sour cream and cider

I looked in the fridge before we went out yesterday, and found a number of things that needed using up: a head of broccoli, some cooked new potatoes, a rather wizened leek, some cream that had gone over. So I got a pork steak out of the freezer with the intention of cobbling something together with it all.

While hurtling round Asda for bulk supplies of cat food later, I bought a basil plant and was seduced by the thought of a Thai stir fry, but by the time we got home, I’d reverted to Plan A. And here it is.

I cut the pork steak into thin strips (I only used one, because we try not to eat much meat, but you’d probably want one each), and browned it off in some olive oil. Fished out the pork and set it aside (in the microwave, as there were a number of hungry cats marauding thereabouts).

Washed and sliced the leek, and chopped three cloves of garlic, and cooked them down in the olive oil, with a small knob of butter for good measure. Added four chopped sage leaves from the garden. When the leeks were softened, I put the pork back, seasoned it, and added about half an inch of cider, stuck a lid on and put it on a low heat.

Cooked it for about 25 minutes, by which time the cider had evaporated, and the dish had almost caught at the bottom of the pan (horror!) then added a couple of tablespoons of cream, stirred it round, warmed it through.

Ate with the broccoli, steamed, and the potatoes, fried in a little olive oil.  Lovely.

leek and feta risotto

I looked at all the pods from the broad beans, and thought “I should be able to make some stock with those”, so I threw them in the slow cooker with some water for a few hours.

There were two rather tired leeks in the fridge, so they were sliced and sautéd in olive oil and butter, then I added 5 oz of arborio rice and stirred it round.  I added some finely chopped lemon balm from the garden too.

Then in went 1 pint of the pod stock (which was not great, but OK), bit by bit, stirring as I went to allow the rice to absorb it..  Some sea salt and black pepper, and half a block of feta at the end, chopped into small chunks, which made it nice and creamy.