Yesterday was a good day. My son went to the pool twice with my wife. They both got a little red. Phoenix stayed with me and we just chilled. Dreading Monday, I tried to think about nothing but the basketball games all day long. I also thought about how I would have to get up at 6 a.m. to run before my wife went to work on Monday morning. This is going to be a hard week…a lot of people to answer to. I’ll somehow make it through though. Been making it through shit my whole life. Anyway, yesterday I made a nice pan roasted chicken breast and a broccoli and parmesan risotto. I had a taste for risotto after seeing Ina’s recipe.

It was amazing. A great dinner that was semi easy to make. I’ve made a hundred risottos so it all went pretty fast for me. Enjoy people.

Broccoli Risotto with a pan Roasted Chicken Breast

For the Risotto
8 cups chicken broth, low sodium
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1/2 red onion, diced, divided
2 tablespoons fresh Italian parsley, chopped
2 tablespoons butter
Salt and pepper
2 cups Arborio rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup fresh Parmesan cheese, grated
5 broccoli florets cut into small pieces and boiled for 30 seconds
Fresh Italian parsley, for garnish

For Chicken
4 skinless and boneless chicken breasts (good quality)
3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
S&P to taste

To make chicken
Preheat your oven to 410 degrees and then heat a large stainless steel skillet and add the olive oil when hot. Season all chicken with salt and pepper on both sides. You can also add a bit of garlic powder and or onion powder for an additional flavor crank. Place the chicken breasts in the hot oil (medium high flame), presentation side down. Make sure the breasts aren’t touching and that the skillet is large enough so that the breasts do not steam or boil. Wash those hands. When the chicken breasts are golden brown
( about 4-6 minutes) on one side, turn them over and place them in the oven and let cook for another 5-8 minutes. You can check the chicken for doneness by slicing a small slit in the middle of one of the breasts to make sure there is no pink and juices are running clear. There are other ways to check but this is the easiest for non cooks. Take chicken and place on a platter and tent with a large piece of aluminum foil until service (which needs to be soon or chicken can dry out)

Cookin’ some Risotto
Heat the chicken broth in a medium saucepan and keep warm over low heat.

Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add 1/2 onion, cook, stirring, until translucent, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and fresh cracked pepper. Add the rice and stir quickly until it is well-coated and opaque, 1 minute. It should have a slight nutty aroma. Stir in wine and cook until it is nearly all evaporated.

Pour in about 1 cup of the warm broth and cook, stirring, until the rice has absorbed the liquid. Add the remaining broth, about 1 cup at a time. Continue to cook and stir, allowing the rice to absorb each addition of broth before adding more. The risotto should be slightly firm and creamy, not mushy. The risotto should also be slightly runny and not thick. This should take about 20 minutes. Stir in broccoli pieces. Stir in Parmesan cheese, cook briefly until melted. Turn flame off. Add butter and stir. It should be nice and shiny. Check for S&P seasoning again. Add parsley and fold in.

To plate: Add a spoonful of Risotto to the center of a large plate. Place a chicken breast to the side or directly on top of the Risotto. Sprinkle chopped parsley as a garnish over entire meal.

I would have a glass of the dry white wine that was used to make the Risotto.

(This meal will feed about 5-6 peeps)