Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Recipe: Creamy Dreamy Risotto

This recipe came about as I was playing with my new pressure cooker over this past summer. Pressure cooking is something I have never done until recently, but I was very interested in trying it because the pressure causes the energy of the food to go inwards and deep, all the way to the Jing level of your body. This is in contrast to cooking a soup, for example, which would expand the energy of the food outwards.

One of my favorite nutrition sources, Paul Pitchford, in his Healing With Whole Foods book, suggests that by eating pressure cooked food with intention and reaching such a deep energetic level one can work on healing both physical and emotional issues that are held deeply within the bodymind. One can also access this deep level to cultivate spiritual growth. Ok – I’m going to try this for a while and see what I think.

I have to say that so far just by taste alone I am very impressed with pressure cooking. Among several dishes I’ve made absolutely perfect black bean soup in just over 20 minutes, but this risotto is my favorite.

My sister says this is the one dish I make that she thinks about, wondering when I’m going to make it again. So many others that have tried it have asked me how to make it that I’d like to share the recipe. Beware – it’s super easy to make and can be addictive.

8 organic tomatoes
1 organic lemon
2 cloves garlic
1 sprig fresh sage chopped (or ½ tsp. dried)
1 box or bag Italian Arborio rice (about 3 cups dry)
1 cup bleu cheese crumbles
2 tbs. olive oil
2 tbs. butter
sprinkle of quality salt
extra water

1. Rinse the rice and set aside.

2. Cut up the tomatoes and de-seed the lemons but keep the peel on. Peel the garlic cloves. Feed all of these through a juicer. If you have 3 cups of rice you will need about 7-8 cups of liquid, so add enough extra water to make this amount. Use 7 cups if your tomato juice is very thin, and 8 cups if the tomato juice has any thickness to it. If you’re not sure, use 8 cups. [If you don't have a juicer you can substitute a bottle of organic tomato juice with the juice of one lemon squeezed into it.]3. In the pressure cooker, heat the olive oil. When hot, add the sage and let it infuse the hot oil for a moment before adding the rice. Coat the rice and stir for about 1-2 minutes.

4. Add the juiced liquid and extra water, sprinkle of salt, stir and cover. Allow the pressure to build and cook on high setting for 7 minutes once the pressure phase has started. After 7 minutes remove from heat and allow the pressure to release.

5. Open the lid and stir the rice mixture. Add 2 tbs. butter and the bleu cheese sprinkles. Stir again and it’s ready to serve. Goes great with a salad and whole grain crunchy bread. (As the instructor of the Five Elements Nutrition Program at our school, I absolve you from any guilt for eating butter in this dish. Sometimes experiencing great happiness when you eat will neutralize a moderate amount of butter.)
Depending on serving size, this recipe serves between 6 and 8 people. Enjoy!
[Note: If you are going to buy a pressure cooker, look for one that is stainless steel. It costs more than aluminum but is worth it! I have a Fagor brand and am very happy with it. I have no financial interest in saying this.]

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