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The Unnatural Cook

a chronicle of weekly meal plans from someone who can't just throw a meal together

Tag Archives: Brother-in-Law

My brother-in-law is a sick man. Sick as in brilliant. When he makes his baked risotto, he makes enough for an army. Then he uses the leftovers to make arancini: fried rice balls. It was only right that we should do the same. We do not regret it.

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So I managed to convince three people who said they didn’t like squash that they did. It was my brother-in-law’s doing. I tried a recipe of his, Oven Baked Risotto with bacon & butternut squash. He is a fantastic chef and this is one of his family’s staples. He makes a double batch and uses the leftovers to make rice balls later in the week. I should have realized how much food I was making when the recipe called for 10 cups of stock but I sort of pretended that it would all be fine and that when he said lasagna pan he meant the 9 x 13 pan I use for brownies. He didn’t. He meant a giant casserole which is not something I have.

4 cups of stock into the recipe I realized I’d made an error. I ended up having to pour all the ingredients, rice, bacon, shallots, squash & stock into the biggest bowl I had and then distribute the mixture between two 9 x 13 pans. My nine year old daughter directed me and I was pretty sure once I’d put it in the oven that we’d be ordering pizza for dinner. But I should have had more faith; four cups of rice does absorb ten cups of liquid. Who knew? Well, my brother-in-law Dan knew but he’s the definition of a natural cook. I’m sure it caused him a certain amount of pain even to be forced to write the recipe down for me. But I’m sincerely grateful he did.

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