I love Big Salads because you can modify the ingredients to the veggies you have on hand, which helps make sure that fresh produce doesn’t go to waste. I also love how quick a Big Salad can come together. Less than 30 minutes for supper on the table is ideal for me during the week!
However, I’m realizing that a Big Salad is really only appetizing during the summer. I got home from work last night and read ‘Big Salad’ on the menu, and my stomach did not swoon. It was such a chilly day yesterday, and the last thing I wanted was a cold salad.
So I improvised, and created what will definitely be the ‘Big Salad’ of the Winter:
Gluten Free Veggie Risotto
Much like a salad, I started with a base. But instead of salad, I used risotto. To make this recipe come together quickly, I used Lundberg Risotto.
Lundberg Risotto is Gluten Free and effortless. In fact, I always keep a box in the pantry as an easy standby. I get it at my local Harris Teeter, so it’s always easy to pick up a box.
While the risotto was cooking away on the stove, I heated my cast-iron skillet with 1/2 tbsp. olive oil. Once heated, I added in 1 cup Grape Tomatoes sliced in half and let those cook for about 5 minutes. Once the tomatoes were softened and beginning to brown, I added in 1 cup chopped steamed broccoli. I let that cook a bit with the tomato, and ended up adding another tbsp. of olive oil to help the flavors meld. Once the broccoli began to brown, I turned the burner off and then added in 3 cloves of garlic minced.
Once the risotto is nearly finished, meaning I taste the rice and it’s cooked through but there is still a bit of liquid, I added the veggies to the pot. Stir well and let the risotto continue to cook for about 5 minutes.
Last night, I also added in 2 cooked Perdue Gluten Free Chicken Tenders chopped at the end for some protein. You could easily add in grilled chicken or fish if that’s what you have on hand.
I did end up serving a salad on the side, and even though it was cold, having a smaller portion was appetizing. The risotto was delicious! I love how easy it was to make, and it was warm and comforting,
and packed with veggies for nutrition and fiber! Sort of like a Super Grownup Mac & Cheese.
You will definitely see variations of this dish throughout the winter season. I could see using mushroom, or asparagus, fresh shallots, or roasted squash. The possibilities are endless!