Pasta Risotto & You

By Nancy Caivano


with Balsamic Roasted Vegetables

Serves 6



Cooking Spray
2 red bell peppers, stems,
   seeds and membranes removed, diced
2-1/2 lb zucchini, washed well and diced
5 plum tomatoes, seeded and diced
6 cloves garlic, peeled and halved lengthwise
2 carrots, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil plus 2 tbsp (divided)
Salt and Pepper
1 onion, chopped
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
2 cups arborio rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
4 cups simmering chicken stock
3 tbsp butter
3/4 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese (or Parmesan)
1/4 cup parsley, chopped
1/4 cup basil, julienne



Heat oven to 450 degrees F, and spray a large baking pan with cooking spray. Combine red pepper, zucchini, tomatoes, garlic, carrots and celery in a large bowl. Add vinegar and 1/4 cup olive oil and toss well. Place in baking pan and roast until vegetables are well-browned and tender, about 30 minutes. Remove from oven, season with salt and pepper and set aside.

In a large saucepan, heat remaining 2 tbsp olive oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and red pepper flakes. Cook until onion is translucent. Add rice, stirring constantly, and cook 5 minutes more, making sure rice does not brown. Add wine, stirring constantly, and let totally evaporate. When wine is evaporated, begin adding stock 1/2 cup at a time, letting each addition evaporate before adding the next addition.

After fourth addition of stock is added, begin tasting rice. Rice should be al dente when done. You need to keep tasting rice, because, depending on rice, you may or may not have to use all of the stock. When fourth addition of stock is absorbed, add roasted vegetables.

After last addition of stock is absorbed, remove from heat, and stir in butter, Romano, parsley, and basil. Season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.

Note: The vegetables can be roasted the day before and brought to room temp before adding to risotto.


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This page created February 2000