Tomato risotto and pan-cooked chicken breast

Our mensa at the university sometimes has themed weeks. For example, they once had the brilliant idea of having a colour week. Each day’s menus were in one colour—red, yellow, green, and white—with the Friday menus having the rainbow of colour. Even the salad buffet was in the colour of the day. I presume only desperation on the red day could have produced such abominations as red onion and strawberry salad. Let that thought simmer in your mind for a moment. A salad containing red onions and strawberries. At the same time. 

This week was a bit of a less controversial: the Italian theme, giving me inspiration for our Thursday dinner. 

I am not sure how much of a sacrilege I made by adding tomato sauce to the risotto, but the boyfriend commented, not on one occasion, that he really liked the food, so it was not all bad. 

There is a plethora of recipes for both risotto and pan-cooked chicken breast, so I do not think a very detailed recipe is necessary. Besides, I was cooking from my heart, adding bits and pieces as my nose felt neccessary, so I do not have the exact amounts. 

I used 200 g of rice, which made a bit too much risotto for the two of us; the leftovers are still waiting in the fridge—never throw away food is my motto. In addition, I pan-cooked two fillets of chicken breasts per person. This is not as much chicken as you might guess: these are “bio” chickens, so each breast is a pathetic less than 100 g of meat.  

I started the risotto by sautéing an onion, a carrot and a few sticks of celery (all finely chopped or sliced); I added some garlic and fried a spoon of tomato paste. After that, I added the rice, half a glass of wine, half a can of tomatoes, about 2 dl of tomato puree, some stock cube (oh shut up, Gordon Ramsay!), a couple of halved pitted olives, and continued to add hot water until the rice was cooked. I finished the risotto with some parmesan (not! vegetarian) and a small handful of sliced basil leaves. 

Before starting the risotto, I marinated the chicken with olive oil, salt, and rosemary. About 10 min before the risotto will be done, I put the chicken on a pan set to medium high heat, turning it twice before it was cooked. 

45 min from entering the kitchen to plating: time well spent.

45 minutes from entering the kitchen to plating: time well spent. A rant about Jamie Oliver’s 15 minute meals is imminent. 


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