Sour Cream and Herb Risotto
One day I wanted to make risotto for a family dinner, but did not want to make a plain or typical Italian-style risotto (I did not have any Parmesan or other Italian cheese on hand anyway, and many such recipes call for that). So, I decided to be creative and come up with my own dish, which I am now sharing with you here. Even my niece liked this risotto, and she is rather picky; she is the reason I used onion powder instead of an onion in this dish—she would not have touched it otherwise!
Making risotto is a bit labor-intensive, as you must keep stirring the rice over the course of twenty-plus minutes to get it to cook properly. That is why in the instructions I recommend that you measure everything out before starting to cook the rice, because once you put the rice in the skillet, you need to be able to focus on it or you might scorch it. Please note that you must use arborio (Italian-style) rice for this dish; it will not turn out properly if you use regular long-grain rice.
- 3 tablespoons butter, softened
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1-1/2 cups arborio rice
- 4 cups (1 quart) chicken broth
- 1/2 cup water
- 1-1/2 tablespoons lemon juice, (about 1/2 medium-sized lemon)
- 1 clove garlic, minced, (or 1/2 tsp. preserved minced garlic)
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 teaspoon sage
- 3/4 teaspoon rosemary
- 1/2 teaspoon oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon thyme
- 1/8 teaspoon white pepper
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- Pre-measure all ingredients before turning on the stove-top. Add the 1/2 cup water to the chicken broth. Combine all of the seasonings except the garlic and salt in one bowl.
- Heat the butter and olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
- Add arborio rice to skillet and stir into the butter and oil for about thirty seconds.
- Add one-third (a little over 1-1/3 cups) of the broth to the rice in the skillet. Stir frequently until the rice has absorbed the liquid, making sure that the rice does not stick to the bottom of the pan.
- Add another third of the liquid to the skillet, repeating step four. While keeping an eye on the rice, add the lemon juice, garlic, and salt to the yet unused portion of the the chicken broth (it is best to do this right after you have poured the second portion of the broth into the skillet, since the rice will be less likely to scorch if you leave it for a minute).
- Add the remainder of the chicken broth to the skillet. Also sprinkle the seasoning mixture into the pan, mixing the seasonings in well.
- When rice is creamy and has absorbed the last of the liquid (in other words, the rice should not be runny), turn the heat down to low. Add the sour cream to the rice and stir until it is thoroughly combined. Serve immediately. Store any uneaten portion in the refrigerator.
- This recipe is naturally gluten-free (as long as your chicken broth, sour cream, etc. doesn't have gluten in it!).
- Substitute vegan butter and sour cream to make this dairy-free.
- You can make a vegan version of this recipe by substituting vegetable broth for the chicken broth, and using vegan butter and sour cream.