What a family favourite. What a simple masterpiece.
- 600g chicken breast, Lilydale free range, diced
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- Healthy squeeze of chunky garlic paste, or two smashed cloves
- 1.5 cups arborio rice, Jude used Riviana brand
- 500g pack of diced butternut pumpkin from Coles
- $3 pack of baby spinach leaves
- About a quarter of a cup of shaved Millel Parmesan
- 1 litre Campbell's Real Chicken Stock, salt reduced
- Roughly 2tbsp olive oil, Jude used Cobram Estate, extra virgin
This one's a pictorial. Chop the stuff that wants chopping.
Accurately measure the oil with a generous pour.
Brown up the chicken chunks with the heat up high, but don't cook 'em too much or they'll turn into rubber balls.
Take the chicken chunks out of the pot into a bowl to rest. Drop the heat to medium and soften the onion for five minutes.
Add the garlic, swish it in.
Chuck the arborio in the pot, and turn up the heat, coating and toasting the rice for a minute or so, being careful not to brown it.
Dump all the stock in the pot in one go, leaving just a dribble in the bottom of the box to go everywhere later when cleaning up. It's what Jude did. Then bring the lot to the boil, stirring it a few times to make sure the delicious ricey bits don't stick to the bottom of the pot. Once boiling, turn the heat to low, stick a lid on it, pour a Chardy and go watch The Bold and The Beautiful, taking out the ads, or set a timer for 22 minutes. Stir every few ad breaks, maybe every five minutes.
At the last ad-break, pierce the pumpkin bag and chuck it in the microwave for four and a half minutes (ours is a 1200 watter). It should finish to coincide with "B and the B" and the rice finishing.
When the microjibby goes ping add the chicken back into the pot, avoiding pouring the chicken resting goodness in the pot as that'd spoil "la onda" and make my friend Kim grumpy.
Carefully measure the cheese, and chuck that in the pot too and give it all a good stir, then up-end the spinach bag in and give that a good stir, too.
The pumpkin should be nicely rested now, so toss most of that in, too, but leave a bit left over for some reason. Again, what Jude did. Fold it all together, then pop the lid back on and leave it all sit with the heat off for a few minutes.
And just like that, Jude's Chicken, Pumpkin and Spinach Risotto will elevate your taste buds to Heaven.
"And then ignore the recipe. Because that's what mum would have done."