Month: February 2015

Cream Cheese Lasagna

Cream Cheese Lasagna

Are you the type of home cook that plans your meals ahead of time, or one that cooks on the fly? I lean more on cook on the fly type, but we do make an attempt, at least talk about it, to think ahead of […]

Beef Cheek Tacos

Beef Cheek Tacos

I have been thinking about making tongue tacos lately. I know, many might think of this being gross, however if you have never ordered ‘lengua’ from your local tacqueria, well you are missing out. The great thing about using other cuts of beef are that they […]

Homemade Spicy Ranch Doritos

Homemade Spicy Ranch Doritos

This past weekend was a busy one around the house. Running errands, and as I cooked up a bunch of meals, my wife and kids got busy cleaning the house. This seems to be the typical weekend schedule for us, but this one seemed a bit busier. Thankfully my kids did not put up too much of a fuss when they were instructed by my wife to pick up everything under their beds, dust, and vacuum. I hid away in the kitchen, and came up with several different recipes, and one of them was my take on homemade spicy Doritos.

I often joke that when you open our pantry, I often feel like we are aisle 9 at the supermarket. You open it and you get your potato chips, and a variety, pretzels, Doritos, etc. It’s a joke, but my kids pack their lunches every day and they must have some chips. With that said, I noticed that I had a big bag of corn tortillas that I needed to use up, and heck, believe it or not but we were out of Doritos. This is when it came to me…. Make some homemade spicy ranch Doritos!

Homemade Spicy Ranch Doritos

If you have corn tortillas laying around, and you or your kids love Doritos, this is a must make.

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 10 whole corn tortillas, cut into segments
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  • 1/2 package of Spicy ranch seasoning
  • 1/4 tsp garlic salt
  • Pam cooking spray

Preheat your oven to 360 degrees.

Line a couple of baking sheets with parchment paper.

To a large, gallon sized sealable bag, add the cut corn tortillas, and drizzle in the oil. Seal, and gently toss the corn tortillas around so they get some of that oil onto them.

How to make spicy ranch Doritos

I use my latex cooking gloves on the next step to prevent getting a bit oily, but remove all of the tortillas, and line them onto the baking sheets.

Place the sheets into the preheated oven, and cook for about 15 minutes, making sure you pay attention to them as all ovens are different. They can go from soft to burnt in a matter of seconds.

When they get nice and golden, and crisp, remove them from the oven and spray them with the Pam cooking spray to get a light coating on them. This also helps with the seasoning to adhere to them.

Pour the cooked and sprayed tortillas into a brown paper bag. Pour the spicy ranch seasoning and the garlic salt into the bag, seal, and give them a good shake in the bag to get all of the seasoning mixed through.

Pour onto a serving dish, and dig in.

My wife, who normally does not eat Doritos loved these, as did my kids. Simple, easy, and a great way to add Doritos to the cupboard when you are out! Hope you enjoy!

Pasta with Pesto, Potatoes, and Beans

Pasta with Pesto, Potatoes, and Beans

There are many times throughout the week that I want something hearty, but without meat. I want a main course, or heck even a side dish that would go well with things like roasted chicken, and this is one of those dishes. You have to […]

“Slap Ya Mama” Cajun Seasoning – Product Review

“Slap Ya Mama” Cajun Seasoning – Product Review

Like many of you, I turned another year older <Sigh>, but with that said, we had a great time celebrating with family. I’m not sure why folks still buy me gifts for my birthday, but I’m lucky to have been provided a huge bottle of […]

Risotto Cakes

Risotto Cakes

This past weekend was a busy one. I had to work on Friday night for an event, one that is always a bit stressful, and as I wanted to do something for Valentine’s day for my wife that night, I was just unable to. With that said, my wife had sent me a message saying that she had something nice for me when I came home. That made my day to say the least! When I arrived home around 9:30, my wife had an array of cheeses set out on our cheeseboard, along with a couple of delicious beers, and a very thoughtful card. Did I say that made my day?

The following day, I had already planned a nice dinner for my wife, and kids. I had initially decided to go out to dinner, but the cost for dinner service was insane, and I knew I could make a great dinner for my entire family for what restaurants were charging for just the two of us, plus I could probably do a better job, and it was a bit more sexy cooking with my wife.

Risotto Cakes

I had planned a dinner for all of us. It was surf and turf, along with creamy, mushroom risotto. I offered up bone-in rib eyes, beef tenderloin, and succulent shrimp. The kids were jazzed, mostly about the surf and turf, but I think my wife and I were more excited about the mushroom risotto! The dinner turned out awesome, and we had probably a better time staying in and cooking together than going out into the cold, just to be with those who default to a dinner at a restaurant. The following day, we had leftovers, and one of them being a bunch of risotto. I knew exactly what I wanted to make, and as I initially thought of making awesome Italian arancini, I decided to come up with making risotto cakes. These things are excellent, and make a great side dish to any meal.

Let’s get started.

Ingredients for the mushroom risotto:

  • 1 1/2 cups of Arborio rice (Italian short grain rice, used for making risotto)
  • 4 tbsp of olive oil
  • 2 cups baby portabello mushrooms, cleaned, stems removed, chopped
  • 2 shallots, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup of brandy
  • 6 cup unsalted chicken broth
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup Grated Parmesan cheese

Ingredients for making the risotto cakes:

  • Cold, leftover risotto
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup of Italian bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup of olive oil
  • Flat leaf parsley, chopped (optional)

Start by making the risotto.

To a sauce pan, add in all of the chicken stock, and bring it up to a simmer. You need warm/hot stock for this process, not cold stock.

To a medium pot, add 4 tablespoons of the olive oil and to that add your shallots, mushrooms, and garlic. Cook for roughly four minutes, then add in the arborio rice. Stir, cooking for about three minutes, and continue to stir. Add in about a 1/4 cup of the hot stock, and then add in brandy. Stir. The liquid should quickly begin to evaporate.

Now here is the trick, and you must stick with the trick, and that is when you are adding your stock, you will want to keep stirring while the liquid evaporates while cooking the rice. Throw in 2 cups of the chicken stock, and stir until the stock evaporates. Continue this process with the remaining stock. Begin tasting for tenderness. You want the risotto to be creamy and tender. Once done, season with salt and pepper, and the grated cheese. Stir, and serve immediately. Enjoy, then when you are done eating this as a side dish, let it cool, and cover, and refrigerate over night.

The following day is when you make your risotto cakes.

To a bowl, add the egg, and beat it until nice and smooth.

How to make risotto cakes

Add in about 3 cups of the cold risotto, and the bread crumbs. Mix to combine all of the ingredients, and them form them into cakes. I use a ring mold, as I like the molds for a great presentation, but if you do not have ring molds, then form them into patties, as shown above.

Heat a large skillet on medium heat, and add in the olive oil. Bring the oil up to temperature, then add the risotto cakes. I like to add a bit more of the panko bread crumbs to the top and bottom of each risotto cake.

Cook for about 3 minutes, per side, or until nice and golden on each side. Manage your heat as well so that you do not burn the cakes. When I flip the first risotto cake, I place the lid on the skillet, and reduce the heat to a medium-low, to ensure that the risotto cake gets heated through, then I uncover, raise the heat to a medium, and continue to cook until both sides are nice and golden brown.

Remove with a slotted spatula, and serve. Shower with chopped parsley if you prefer.

These risotto cakes are super yummy. No lie. They are everything you love in a risotto (but better), but have this great crispy exterior, and this awesome creamy interior. My wife loved them up, and I couldn’t have been happier to have her cook with my the previous evening and see her enjoy these the following day. Life is good. Hope you enjoy!

Risotto Cakes
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
 
Ingredients
  • Ingredients for the mushroom risotto:
  • 1½ cups of Arborio rice (Italian short grain rice, used for making risotto)
  • 4 tbsp of olive oil
  • 2 cups baby portabello mushrooms, cleaned, stems removed, chopped
  • 2 shallots, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ cup of brandy
  • 6 cup unsalted chicken broth
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • ½ cup Grated Parmesan cheese
  • Ingredients for making the risotto cakes:
  • Cold, leftover risotto
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • ½ cup panko bread crumbs
  • ¼ cup of Italian bread crumbs
  • ½ cup of olive oil
  • Flat leaf parsley, chopped (optional)
Instructions
  1. Start by making the risotto.
  2. To a sauce pan, add in all of the chicken stock, and bring it up to a simmer. You need warm/hot stock for this process, not cold stock.
  3. To a medium pot, add 4 tablespoons of the olive oil and to that add your shallots, mushrooms, and garlic Cook for roughly four minutes, then add in the arborio rice. Stir, cooking for a minute or two, as you continue to stir. Add in about a ¼ cup of the hot stock, and then add in brandy. Stir. The liquid should quickly begin to evaporate.
  4. Now here is the trick, and you must stick with the trick, and that is when you are adding your stock, you will want to keep stirring while the liquid evaporates while cooking the rice. Throw in 2 cups of the chicken stock, and cook and stir until evaporated, and continue this process with the remaining stock. Begin tasting for tenderness. You want the risotto to be creamy and tender. Once done, season with salt and pepper, and the grated cheese. Stir, and serve immediately. Enjoy, then when you are done eating this as a side dish, let it cool, and cover, and refrigerate over night.
  5. The following day is when you make your risotto cakes.
  6. To a bowl, add the egg, and beat it until nice and smooth.
  7. Add in about 2 cups of the cold risotto, and the bread crumbs. Mix to combine all of the ingredients, and them form them into cakes. I use a ring mold, as I like the molds for a great presentation, but if you do not have ring molds, then form them into patties, as shown above.
  8. Heat a large skillet on medium heat, and add in the olive oil. Bring the oil up to temperature, then add the risotto cakes. I like to add a bit more of the panko bread crumbs to the top and bottom of each risotto cake.
  9. Cook for about 3 minutes, per side, or until nice and golden on each side. Manage your heat as well so that you do not burn the cakes. When I flip the first risotto cake, I place the lid on the skillet, and reduce the heat to a medium-low, to ensure that the risotto cake gets heated through, then I uncover, raise the heat to a medium, and continue to cook until both sides are nice and golden brown.
  10. Remove with a slotted spatula, and serve.