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Roasted Chickpea & Raisin Risotto

June 30, 2012, 7:09 pm

Preparation Time: approximately 15 minutes

Cooking Time: 30 minutes

Serving Size: 3-4 servings (a serving should be about ¾ cup)

Ingredients

2 TB garlic, chopped

4 TB olive oil

1 cup Arborio rice

2 ½ cups Vegetable Stock, no salt added (you may use chicken stock here, as well)

½ cup Coconut Milk

¼ cup Green bell pepper, diced

¼ cup Red bell pepper, diced

¼ cup Vidalia onion, diced

1-15.5oz can Chickpeas (no salt added), drained, rinsed and dried

2 TB chili powder

2 TB cumin

1 TB ginger, ground (or 1.5 TB minced fresh ginger)

2 ½ tsp cayenne pepper, ground

½ cup raisins

2 TB Buttermilk (made from skim or reduced fat milk)*

2 TB Parmesan cheese, grated

3 TB chives, chopped

TT salt

Directions

Preheat oven to 450 degrees (you may use a toaster oven for this).

Sauté garlic, onion, and bell peppers in 2 TB olive oil over medium-high heat until slightly softened. Add 1 TB cumin, ½ TB ginger, 1 TB chili powder, and 1 tsp cayenne - sauté 30 seconds, stirring constantly.

Add Arborio rice and stir frequently until outside of rice becomes slightly translucent. It will begin to look "wet." Add 1 cup vegetable stock immediately. Stir and reduce heat to medium/medium-low. Allow this mixture to bubble, stirring frequently. DO NOT COVER.

Meanwhile, Toss chickpeas in remaining spices (ginger, cumin, chili powder, cayenne), 2 TB olive oil, and season with salt. Place on sheet pan and make a single layer. Roast at 450 degrees for 15 minutes, giving them a shake every 5 minutes to evenly distribute the browning effect. Remove from oven.

Once the liquid in the rice has reduced to about 1/3, add the remaining vegetable stock. Stir frequently. Once the mixture becomes thick and creamy, add the coconut milk. Stir constantly to prevent burning on the bottom of the pot. The mixture will become very thick. Once this happens, add buttermilk and cheese; remove from heat. Stir these ingredients into the mixture completely and set aside; season with salt.

Toss in the raisins and chickpeas. Garnish with chives.

Storage and Turn-out

Enjoy alone or with a mixed green salad with shredded carrot, radish, red cabbage, and Vidalia onion dressing! For those who enjoy meat/do not have sodium or blood pressure concerns - grill chorizo cut lengthwise in half and serve alongside this dish!

Tips

-Risotto is a dish that is created by softening the outer layer of the rice over high heat (during the sauté stage) and then completely broken by stirring frequently while in liquid. This breaks the starches within the rice, creating the creamy texture.

- *Buttermilk is used here instead of butter - this is called “mounting.” It is important to “mount” a creamy dish (usually with butter) to give shine and roundness to the creamy dish. In an effort to reduce fat and add an additional “tang,” buttermilk is used here (which is usually made from skim or reduced fat milk).

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