See, risotto is a dish that requires patience. This rice (called Arborio) is cooked long and slow so each piece can take in the liquid that you will gradually pour in as you stir, stir, stir. It's actually a good dish to make if you're sitting around your kitchen drinking wine. I speak from experience here. I love it because you can converse, sip wine and stir your rice mixture. Easy peasy.
This is exactly what we did last weekend when I made this dish (along with my Spectacular Spinach Salad) as a welcome home meal for my Snow Bird parents who had just arrived back from their sojourn in sunny Florida. Sure, it was a little time consuming but the result is well worth the effort. You get a very tasty dish with little chunks of sausage, bits of tomato and the goodness of fresh spinach.
Needless to say it was a hit and helped to warm my parents'
2 (14oz) cans of fire-roasted diced tomatoes
3 cups chicken broth (I used sodium-reduced)
1 tbsp olive oil
1 medium white onion, finely diced
5 honey garlic sausage, casings removed
1 cup Arborio rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
2 tbsp butter
2 cups chopped, fresh baby spinach (stems removed)
1/2 cup fresh Parmesan cheese, grated
In a large saucepan, heat the tomatoes and chicken broth until at a low simmer. Maintain the low simmer.
Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, add the onions and sausage. Using a spatula, break up the sausage into small pieces while it cooks. Cook onions and sausage until sausage is no longer pink - approximately 7 minutes.
Add the rice to the sausage mixture and mix until the rice is coated with the oil. Cook rice for 1 minute. Add the wine and stir until most of it evaporates, approximately 1 minute. The wine adds a great flavour to this dish. Don't skip this step!
Using a large ladle, spoon the tomato mixture - one ladle at a time -- into the rice mixture. Stir constantly until the tomato mixture is absorbed into the rice. Spoon the next ladle of tomato mixture and continue this process until you've added all of the tomato/broth mixture. This step will take about 30 minutes.
Remove rice mixture from heat. Add butter, baby spinach and Parmesan cheese. Mix until the spinach has nicely wilted. Garnish with additional Parmesan cheese or freshly ground black pepper (personally we just added some pepper and it was amazing!).
Inspired by: Tomato, Sausage and Spinach Risotto by A Bitchin' Kitchen