Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Leftovers Risotto

When I was growing up, any leftovers stir-fried, with a dash of soy sauce, qualified as chinese food in my mother's parlance. This is a risotto in a similar vein. For all you vegetarians, sorry, this is a chicken recipe.

I can't say this a recipe proper, since the whole point was to creatively use up what needed to be eaten, so just about all the ingredients are dispensable or replaceable. But here's what I did tonight.

Put on one cup of rice in the rice cooker, with one cup of water, and one cup of chicken stock (leftover from the roast chicken I made last night).

Meanwhile, I cut up some green onions, half a poblano (otherwise known as pascilla) pepper, half an anaheim pepper, quarter large red bell pepper, half cup or so of sliced mushrooms. Tossed them in a pan with some chicken schmaltz (skimmed from the stock, leftover from last night), and saut├ęd for a few minutes.

Meanwhile, diced up half an eggplant, tossed with salt in a bowl, to dessicate (they're always rubbery if you don't dry them out a bit). Stirred the vegetables.

Meanwhile, picked as much chicken meat as I could off the bones of my leftovers, cutting up any large pieces, and tossed it all into pan with vegetables. Kept stirring. Once the rice was ready, I drained the eggplant, then squeezed into a couple paper towels to reduce liquid more. Tossed into pan with chicken and vegetables. (Bear in mind that this may produce a rather salty dish. Next time I'll try rinsing the eggplant before draining and squeezing. But then, my wife and I are quite sensitive to salt).

After a couple minutes, once the eggplant was a little browned, added the rice, and another 1/4-1/2 cup of the chicken stock (I always have a lot of stock!). Stirred over medium heat, left to simmer.

Scooped into bowls, sprinkled grated cheese on top, and garnished with cilantro. Dinner.

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