Easy Cauliflower Risotto with Crisp Potato Bits

Ingredients

For the risotto:

  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup cauliflower florets, roughly chopped (from ½ head of a small cauliflower), stalk reserved
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • ¾ cup Arborio rice
  • ¼ cup dry white wine
  • 2-3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 3 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan

For the potato bits:

  • 1 small fingerling potato, finely diced
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon coarse sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

This recipe is relatively quick (maybe 35 minutes total, plus some chopping) and all the fun takes place in two pans (one for the broth, one for the risotto).  You have to watch the risotto carefully since you’ll be adding broth over time, but it is fun to  watch the rice grains inflate and eventually reach the perfect level of softness.

Directions

For the risotto:

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Heat the broth in a saucepan, bring to a boil then to a simmer, and add the florets.

In another saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium-low heat. Add the garlic, onion, and cauliflower stalk, and cook gently until softened, about 10 minutes. (Meanwhile, start on the potato bits below.)

Once the vegetables are softened, turn up the heat, add the rice, and cook until slightly translucent, about 2 minutes. Add the wine, stir, and cook 2-3 minutes more. Now the fun part: Start adding the broth, one ladle at a time, and simmer until the rice is soft on the outside with a slight bite on the inside, about 20 minutes.

The florets should be soft at this point so you can add them with the broth and crush them into the rice with a wooden spoon.
Once rice is cooked, stir in the parsley. Remove from heat. and stir in the Parmesan. Garnish with potato bits.

For the potato bits:

Meanwhile, place potatoes on a lined baking sheet and toss with the remaining ingredients. Bake until golden and crispy, about 15 minutes.


 

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