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It’s Meatless Monday-Sweet Potato and Black Bean Risotto (Plus Arancini)

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There’s nothing I like better than cooking once and eating twice. It’s saves time and money and I think this week’s Meatless Monday double feature fits the bill. The first dish is a risotto and using leftovers you turn it into a tasty treat that’s great as a meal when combined with a salad, or even an appetizer for the upcoming holiday season. I used canned chipotle peppers. They’re hot so a little goes a long way and leftovers I keep in a container in the freezer and use when needed.

For the Risotto
1 cup Arborio rice
4 cups vegetable stock
1 medium size sweet potato cut into small cubes
1 onion, finely diced
1 cup cooked black beans
1 tablespoon chopped chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (use more or less depending on your heat tolerance)
Good pinch of salt
2 tablespoons oil

For the Arancini
Leftover risotto (I used 2 cups)
½ cup flour
1 egg, beaten
1 cup breadcrumbs, Panko style makes a nice crust
Oil for frying
Optional for a dipping sauce- 1 cup mayonnaise mixed with 2 tablespoons mango chutney

To Make the Risotto

In a large saucepan and over medium heat, heat oil and then add the onion and cook for a few minutes until slightly softened.

Add the sweet potato and cook for a few minutes and then add the salt and chipotle pepper and continue cooking for about 5 minutes or until the sweet potato is softened and slightly browned.

Add the rice and stir well.

Make sure that the vegetable stock is warm and slowly begin adding ½ cup at a time. Once it’s incorporated, add another ½ cup and repeat the process until all the stock is used. The rice should be cooked by now but check and if necessary add more stock.

Serve immediately.
Serves 4

For the arancini
Take the leftover risotto and roll it into balls (slightly smaller than golf ball size)
Place on a plate and put in the fridge for about 30 minutes.

On a plate spread flour, on another plate, place the beaten egg, on a third, the breadcrumbs.
Roll the risotto balls first in the flour and then then the egg, and finally the breadcrumbs.
Set them on a plate and then put them in the fridge for about 30 minutes.

In a heavy skillet, heat oil (you need about a couple of inches of it or you can deep fry these too)
Add about four of the arancini at a time. They cook quickly, just a few minutes. Remove from pan and place on a plate onto which you’ve put a paper towel to soak up excess oil.

Serve immediately with the dipping sauce.

Serves 4

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