Cardamom Cilantro Risotto

Rice is nice, but it’s not particularly photogenic.

I had oodles of fun with flavors this weekend, and this recipe is largely the product of my aforementioned experimenting.  This recipe was also created to be a friend for the steak which I marinated in a beer which I could not drink.  There is a tale to be told here.  Let’s start at the beginning.

About a month ago, I was in Seattle, where I saw a great many sites and spent a substantial amount of time enjoying the finer things in life- things like great beer.  One of the stops on this whirlwind Emerald City adventure was Elysian Brewing Company.  While there, I sampled several of their brews and purchased one of their more unique creations: this year, Elysian has teamed with a local artist to create their 12 Brews of the Apocalypse series.  On the day that I was there, they were just about to launch their newest beer at the time, a chocolate chili ale.  Not until a week or so ago did I finally open that bottle and give it a try.  I’m not one to speak ill of another brewer’s work, but I did not care for it.  Truthfully, I did think it was a very well crafted beer, but it was, to my shock and surprise, way to spicy for me to drink straight.  Not wanting to let a good beer go to waste, I put some thought into the best way to utilize this brew.  A short while ago, Sweet and Stout did a marvelous post about a jalapeno chocolate cupcake with raspberry frosting that they created using this beer, and, indeed, the thought crossed my mind to try something similar.  However, after pondering the issue, I elected to go in another direction.  Given the surprising spiciness of the brew, I elected to turn in a more savory direction.  That said, I’ve had a lovely cut of flat-iron steak marinating in the brew for the majority of the day, soaking in all those chilis and hops from the beer to create one darn tasty cut of meat.

Moving on to the risotto, the specific inspiration for that actually came from… ice cream!  I recently purchased Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams at Home and have been thoroughly enjoying a myriad of frozen delights crafted by my own two hands.  The recipe of Ms. Bauer’s that I tried today was the lime cardamom frozen yogurt, and, as one may have guessed, it turned out splendidly!  I love the unique combinations of spices and fruits that are utilized in so many of the recipes, and I have been eager to apply such combinations to other dishes.  That said, let’s make it happen with rice!

Cardamom Lime Risotto

Serves 8

2 cups rice (any rice will do, I used brown long grain)

2 cups (or 1 14 oz. can) beef broth

2 cups water

1/2 tsp. cardamom

1/2 cup fresh cilantro

2 Tbs. lime juice

1/4 cup Mexican blend finely shredded cheese

Equipment

8″x8″ glass or ceramic dish with lid (if it doesn’t have a lid, aluminum foil will work)

spatula

Preheat oven to 350F.  In an 8″x8″ glass or ceramic dish, combine rice, beef broth, cardamom, and water.  Cover the dish and bake for 1 hour or until all of the liquid has been absorbed.

Once all of the liquid has been absorbed, remove the dish from the oven.  Stir gently with a spatula, removing any grains of rice that may be stuck to the side of the dish.  Add the lime juice, cheese, and cilantro, and mix in.  Serve warm.  Enjoy!

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2 thoughts on “Cardamom Cilantro Risotto

    • Hey, Lauren! I know what you mean; an hour is a while to wait for this tasty side dish, but I think that it’s worth it. While you’re waiting, at least you’ll have plenty of time to get everything else ready for dinner or enjoy a mojito (new recipe on Friday!) or catch up on an episode of your favorite TV show! The possibilities are endless! Have fun, and enjoy!

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