A mother-daughter conversation on food and cooking (mostly)

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Successful Dessert Things from the Internet

I was flailing a little on Sunday morning before my piano recital--I have a reputation for serving an excellent dessert buffet after the music, and I had made only one measly (well, okay it serves at least twelve people and has a pound of butter in it) chocolate tart.

It's very dangerous to just grab recipes from the internet and make them for guests, but I did it anyway, and these two were quite wonderful. The pumpkin dessert thing is embarrassingly easy.

Nobody ate the coconut cupcakes that afternoon, but as leftovers--which I have spread around the neighborhood, referring to myself as the Calorie Fairy--they have been very popular.

Microwave Risotto

Yeah, I know, this isn't a picture of risotto--which isn't very photogenic--but rather a tableau of the way watermelon is eaten in Mexico, with a squeeze of lime and a dusting of chile powder.

I tried microwave risotto because I was casting around for a substantial side dish, and I had some arborio rice and some excellent homemade chicken broth on hand. I was also trying to finish my sweater and didn't want to stand over the stove and stir for a long time. I think this recipe originally came from a microwave cookbook by Barbara Kafka, but it's written out in my longhand from decades ago, so I can't be sure. It was delicious and the texture was just right.

Microwave Risotto

1/2 small onion, chopped fine
3 tablespoons butter

Microwave, uncovered, for 3 minutes.

1 cup arborio rice

Stir in rice and microwave 2 1/2 minutes.

1/4 cup vermouth
2 1/2 cups chicken broth
Medium pinch of saffron threads
1/4 teaspoon salt

Add vermouth, broth, saffron, and salt. Stir, cover, and microwave for 10 minutes.

Remove cover, stir, and microwave 8 minutes longer.

1/3 cup Parmesan cheese

Stir in Parmesan and serve.