Mr. Food: Easy Risotto

Side dishes are always second banana to the real star of the meal, the main course! The meat gets top billing in meat and potatoes. Then there's chicken and rice, but what if that rice were risotto? What's that?

In a skillet, we melt 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat, add and sauté 1 small minced onion until it's tender. Then we add 3/4 cup Arborio rice (I'll tell you more about that in a bit).

Okay, cook that for about 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Stir in 1 can ready-to-use chicken broth, 1/2 cup water, 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning, and 1/4 teaspoon each of salt and pepper, and bring it to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and let it simmer, covered, 15 to 20 minutes, until all the liquid is absorbed.

And that easily its smooth richness is ready to bring us to taste heaven! Now, yes, we can substitute any long or whole-grain rice, but for authentic risotto, Italian-grown A-R-B-O-R-I-O rice is shorter and plumper than most short-grain rice and it'll give us a creamier texture, and it's sold in most all supermarkets.

So, for a rich creamy and satisfying side dish that'll stand right up to our best main dish, risotto does it!