Post-Holiday Dinner – Veggie Risotto w/ Leftover Sausage

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Aren’t these place mats cute? My grandma made them!

Mr. Foodie and I have yet to go grocery shopping for the week, opting instead to lounge around the house and enjoy each other’s company since we rarely have the same days off anymore. Luckily we had a few remaining provisions for dinner tonight which we quietly enjoyed, just the two of us, after what seemed like a marathon of family dinners (all delicious, of course). I’ve already written about making my traditional risotto, but this version was born out of necessity. Instead of chicken stock, all I had was some veggie stock. Instead of white wine, I had red. I also had leftover sausage to use up.

So I made my risotto, starting with the chopped onion and garlic, adding a generous pour of red wine, and ending with ladles of heated veggie stock. The trick to a good risotto is to stir rather frequently and avoid adding too much liquid at a time and in general. Over the holidays, I watched a fair amount of cooking on TV because it is a guilty pleasure of mine. Guy Fieri made a beet risotto on his show that I positively salivated over. Beets aren’t everyone’s cup of tea, but his flavor combo sounded spectacular. I thought of his creation as I made this dish because of the deep red color and the veggie flavors. I finished the risotto with a bit of Parmesan cheese and the leftover sausage.

While not perhaps the nicest looking dish, it was incredibly delicious. Like many pasta/rice dishes, risotto is just a great base for all kinds of things. You can buy one pack of risotto and it will last for a good 4-5 dinners because you only use one cup to make four servings. You can make it down-right decadent with tangy wine, fatty meat stock, and rich cheese or you can go ultra light with chopped veggies and veggie stock. It really is a versatile dish. Paired with a fresh salad, as we did tonight, it makes a fantastic dinner option.

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