I've gotten in the habit of writing the menu for the week and posting it on the fridge. Not only is this charming habit passed down directly from my mom (like so many other wonderful and challenging traits), but it has made a lot of things easier. Grocery shopping, for example, is a lot easier when you know what you're planning to eat that week. It helps reduce the likelihood of purchasing well-intentioned produce only to have it rot in the fridge when you didn't have a concrete plan for it. I WILL buy my weight in broccoli; thanks for making it on sale, Store! Writing a menu also helps to motivate you if you're having an especially crappy day. Well, the universe obviously hates me today, but at least it's spaghetti night.
Today wasn't terrible, but it was the perfect day to make my first risotto. The only thing I know about risotto is from the only season I watched Hell's Kitchen - Gordan Ramsay kept yelling at the aspiring chefs about how bleeping terrible it was. My expectations were not high. I picked the recipe from a signed cookbook I recently received as a gift, Lidia Cooks from the Heart of Italy. Risotto with Gorgonzola? The ingredients are right there in the title so on to the grocery list they went and on to the fridge menu for Tuesday night.
Apparently, the only trick about risotto is that you don't leave it alone... EVER! I tried a few times to re-fill my glass of wine or make the final preparations on my salad. No, blurbled Risotto, you must tend to me! So you just stand and stir. Stand and stir. Stand and.....
Ok, so it gets old after a while. But tending to something relatively simple helps to make the rest of life's complexities melt away. If you are willing to put in a little preparation ahead of time (like going to the store to make sure you have gorgonzola on the day you need it), be patient and take the time to continue stirring (and tasting) and and repeating, something pretty awesome might come out of it. I could keep stirring the metaphorical risotto and never have it turn out right and that's okay. At least it's risotto night.