We’ve made risotto before, with zucchini, and here’s another version based on a recipe from the New York Times.  We really liked this one because, first of all, even though some people call risotto “wet rice” it’s actually a really good part of Italian cuisine – who wouldn’t love a creamy, cheesy, carb-based dish?  But second, this recipe uses a unique and really easy technique for cooking your spinach.  Try this out for yourself and see how you like it.

To make the risotto, you’ll need:

Start by putting all your spinach in a colander lined with a clean dish towel.




Fill a tea kettle about halfway with water and set it to boil, then pour all the water over the spinach.




This should wilt the spinach:




When it cools off a little bit, ball up the towel and squeeze all the water out …




… then put the towel back into the colander and set the spinach aside to drain out any extra water.


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Now finely dice up half your onion and one whole bunch of celery.  Heat 5 tablespoons of butter in a very large pan over medium heat, and when it’s melted place in the celery, onion, and 2 grated garlic cloves.


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Cook these vegetables for about 7 minutes, until they’re softened, then add in 1 1/2 cups of Arborio rice.




Toast the rice for 5 minutes, then mix in 3/4 cup of wine and stir it around until it has evaporated.  Dissolve 4 Massel 7’s cubes in 3 1/2 cups of boiling water, then pour in this stock a half cup at a time until it has all been transferred to the pan with the rice and veggies.  Cook everything, stirring often, for 15-20 minutes until the rice is fluffy and the liquids are all absorbed.




Meanwhile, take your spinach and place it in a food processor along with another tablespoon of butter.


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Then puree the spinach and butter together.




Also, cut your cheese into small cubes.




When your risotto is fully cooked, it should look like this:




Stir in the spinach …


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… then the cheese.




Once everything is mixed together, your risotto is done!




And you can serve it up nicely.




We loved this new technique for wilting the spinach:  it’s much easier and quicker than pushing spinach leaves around in a pan until they cook down.  That makes this risotto a little simpler to prepare, but the spinach flavor is still fully there – and combined with the cheese, plus the rice cooked in both stock and wine and flavored with onions and celery, this makes for a really tasty version of risotto.  And it’s super colorful too!  If you’re on the fence about risotto, trust us that this is not just wet rice, but a veggie-packed dish that’s creamy and delicious.