March 29, 2010

Rice with Zucchini and Spinach

A fortifying meal.

Sunday supper was spent at home, just the two of us.

My charge was to wilt the spinach and saute the zucchini.

"Try to get some color on the zucchini." He requested.

Each took their turn in the pan aided by extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper, my watchful eye and a pair of tongues.

Roberto's charge was to created the rice base to which the spinach and zucchini would marry. He did so by adding a dice of yellow onion and garlic to extra virgin olive oil. Under his watchful eye and a wooden spoon, over a low flame, the onion and garlic fell limp. Long grain rice was added, followed by ladle after ladle of warmed chicken stock.

Just like risotto.

R.E.M. serenaded.

We sat down, finishing our first bowl in what seemed to be the blink of an eye.

Next, we cracked three large eggs over asparagus in a pan and proceeded to sit down to a second bowl, which we inhaled while the yolks and whites, freckled with salt and pepper, set over a gentle flame.

In time, we cleared our bowls, making room for plates. We divvied up the fried eggs over asparagus, and slices of ciabatta were brought to the table.

It was a soup to nuts kinda day, rounding off our meal with some roasted peanuts.

Each course enjoyed with a 2008 Per Me Sola Rosso Toscana.

Oh, and we're still hammering away at the maple walnut cookies I made last week. They're a little stale, but worth taking to the end.


  1. I love R.E.M. and the risotto looks scrumptious. Now that I think about it I haven't had risotto in quite a while...

  2. What a wonderful Spring meal. I can't wait for baby zucchini at the farmers market - as soon as they arrive I'm making risotto (and hoping it looks as beautiful as your lovely rice).

  3. Magda - We like to take a break from pasta every once in a while. We usually do so with a nice risotto. :)

    Katie - The zucchini were a moment of weakness. Miles away from being in season... :)

  4. What a wonderful spring supper (or breakfast, or lunch, or brunch...I could eat this any time of day). And I'd say the caramelization on that zucchini is just about perfect - bravo!

  5. Nancy - Thanks :) I labored over the that zucchini like you wouldn't believe.

  6. The way you describe cooking is addictive and I can feel myself going through every step with you. The only downside is I don't get to share it :-/ This is so delicious, comforting and totally my kind of supper - you guys always make the tastiest things. Lovely shots too.

  7. What a fabulous looking baby zucchini dish! I Love simplicity of this dish ....

  8. Lovely, Amuse, just lovely. Simple and elegant and healthy and delicious. :-)

  9. What a nice meal. Your zucchini is perfectly cooked, just the right amount of color.

  10. Oh, looking good. Looking absolutely delicious! I made risotto with red wine, onion and parmesan, served with grilled halloumi cheese last night. Love the way rice can absorb so many layers of flavors. Beautiful zucchini!

  11. Beautiful. Roberto is right, the color on the zucchini is key.

  12. Tracy, I get dinner envy every time I look at your posts. And what meal doesn't taste better with REM serenading you?

  13. Vanessa - It is always nice to share a meal, but it's also nice to go through the motions just for yourself, I think. :)

    frockandfork - You should have seen the mound of dishes for such a simple dish. :)

    Tart - It felt very healthy, especially since Roberto didn't sneak in a nub of butter.

    Denise - I could have eaten the plate right after I shot the pictures. The zucchini were calling me...I had to restrain.

    tiina - risotto is the perfect canvas, I agree. Your dish sounds simply delicious, tiina.

    Elisabelle - I'm eating the last of it for my lunch today. It's making me hungry just thinking about it.

    Michele - He causes me to pause and think about what I'm doing. I was really happy with the results. I think he was too.

    Wendi - :) REM was perfect background music.

  14. even though it's out of season, I, too, couldn't resist the zucchini at the grocery store--and it tasted pretty good. I often make one-pot rice/vegetable dishes for dinner: simple and satisfying, and a nice break from pasta.

  15. I love how you mentioned it was a soup to nuts kind of day...I definitely get that.

  16. It must be amazing to be married to a man, who shares passion for cooking with you.... your dinners sound so lovely and delicious... :)

  17. Sounds like a wonderful meal for two - making me long to share more meals at home with my loved one.

  18. omg that rice looks divine and eggs with asparagus...oh heavenly


  19. Your photos are lovely- the zucchini looks just perfectly golden brown. I love to make rice risotto style- the texture and flavor is always so delicious.

  20. Nancy - We need to make more one pot rice dishes. Like you said, they are simple and satisfying. Although, we haven't yet mastered portion control. So easy to eat. :)

    alexandria - I like saying soup to nuts. :)

    M. - Roberto inspires me every day. I'll get an idea, but he's able to take it to the next level. A great teacher.

    Apples and Butter - It's our favorite part of the day, sitting down to dinner together (lunch and breakfast too) :)

    sweetlife - It was pretty heavenly :)

    tiffany - Thank you :) We tend to make rice risotto style more than the traditional arborio.

  21. You got PERFECT color on that zucchini. Yum. My husband is on an "I hate rice and pasta" kick that I find really annoying.

  22. Melange a Trois - Oh my! There's always polenta and gnocchi. :)

  23. Nicely browned zucchini, I'll have to remember that!
    Reminds me of pickled zucchini, thinly sliced and browned like yours, then put in a glass jar, covered with vinegar flavored with a bit of garlic, some oregano and a bay leaf.

    Ever since I found in an old issue of Southern Living (left behind by a previous guest in a rented house at the South Carolina coast) a recipe for zucchini and onion slices very gently sauteed - to better preserve the delicate taste - in a bit of butter and olive oil, have I cooked this favorite vegetable of mine in that manner. The only time browned zucchini are served in my house is when I make a baking sheet full of roasted zucchini slices.

  24. I love risotto and this recipe is one I really have to try... have a lovely weekend!


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