Friday, December 18, 2009

Potato Soup

So this weekend, I'm headed to Key West for a week for Christmas. This is a tradition my parents and I started about five years ago. It's the greatest thing. When we get on the plane, it's 25 degrees. When we get off the plane, it's 80 degrees. I really cannot think of a better way to spend Christmas.
The forecast for tomorrow is COLD and 6-10 inches of SNOW. So here's an easy recipe, with simple ingredients to keep you warm this weekend while I'm laying on the beach with a cabana boy serving me pina coladas.
Serve it up with some hot crusty bread, and snuggle up to the one you love (or anyone who's willing to share their body heat)!
4 tablespoons butter OR olive oil
1 large onion diced
2 cloves garlic chopped
4 large potatoes diced (you can leave the peeling on if you wish...get some fiber)
4 carrots diced
3 stalks celery chopped
4 tablespoons all purpose flour
3-4 tablespoons Emeril's Essence (depending on how spicy you like it)
6 cups organic chicken broth
4 cups half & half (use fat free if you want, it tastes just as good)
4 cups shredded cheese (I use jack/colby mix, but swiss is great too!)
Fresh parsley
Heat a large soup pot and add the butter/oil til hot. Saute the onions, garlic, carrots, and celery about 10 minutes on medium-high until onions are translucent. Don't overcook these, they'll get some more heat/love when you add the liquid. Add the flour and Essence and stir well. Cook for another 5 minutes. Add the chicken broth....THEN add the potatoes. If all the veggies aren't covered, throw in some water until they are submerged. Turn up the heat and bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer until the potatoes are still firm, but cooked. If you cook them too long, they'll turn to mush in your soup. I'd say no longer than 12 minutes. Turn the heat to LOW, and let it rest and cool down. If you add the dairy when the broth is too hot, the curds will separate from the cream, giving you a very "mealy/gritty" texture. This is a good time to go pick out a good movie, or pre-heat the oven for the bread, or call some friends 'cause you've just realized this recipe makes an a$$ load of soup! After the soup has cooled a bit, add the cream, and SLOWLY bring the heat up, then add the cheese. Stir 'til all the cheese is melted, season with salt and pepper, and add the fresh parsley. You can also top with chopped with bacon! ENJOY AND STAY WARM!!!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009


One of the many reasons I love love love to cook is having the ability to take a recipe and "tweek" it to my liking. Last night while sitting at the dinner table with my glass of cold pinot grigio and my last issue of Gourmet magazine (I read magazines while I eat), I ate the best chicken I've ever had. Not from a restaurant, but from MY kitchen. This chicken had such simple ingredients with an abundance of FLAVOR! What intrigued me most about this recipe is that I found it on, and it was meant for one person. Yay! That's me! I usually don't pay much attention to Tyler Florence, but I most certainly will from now on. Go to the store, buy the ingredients, and make it TONIGHT. I promise, if you make this, the next time you see me you'll want to kiss me...that's how good it is. Enjoy. Ingredients 1 chicken breast bone-in, with skin (bone and skin = flavor!) Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 3 Baby Bella Mushrooms 1/4 Red Onion chunked (see pic) Handful of baby carrots 3 Fingerling Potatoes (you could use new potatoes, yukon, etc) A few florets of Cauliflower 3 Garlic cloves whole, peeled 1 sprig fresh rosemary 4 sprig fresh thyme 1/4 cup white wine 1/4 cup organic chicken broth 1/2 lemon, juiced and zested Directions Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Season the chicken on both sides with a generous amount of kosher salt and pepper. Place a cast-iron or regular ovenproof skillet on the stove over medium-high heat. Drizzle the pan with the oil and lay the chicken in the hot oil, skin-side down. Cook for about 5 minutes until the skin begins to set and get yummy crispy. Immediately put into hot oven and bake for ten minutes. Take the chicken breast out of the pan and throw in the mushrooms, carrots, potatoes, onions, cauliflower, garlic, thyme, rosemary and lemon zest. Stir well to get all the veggies/herbs coated, then put the chicken breast back in the pan. Stick the whole thing in the hot oven and roast for 15-20 minutes until the chicken is cooked, and the veggies are soft and roasted. The last thing to make is a quick sauce using the flavors left in the bottom of the skillet. Take all the stuff out of the pan and arrange on a dinner plate, and cover with a piece of foil to keep warm while preparing the pan sauce. Return to stovetop and stir in the wine, chicken broth and lemon juice and cook over high heat, scraping up the flavors with a wooden spoon. Cook the liquid down to a syrup, about 5 minutes. Drizzle the pan sauce over the dish, season with salt and pepper. Serve with warm toasty bread.
2/17/2010 UPDATE:
I think I've made this about ten times since I posted this recipe. I've found it works with just about any veggie, pretty much whatever you've got in the fridge. The other night I had some Brussels sprouts that needed cooked, quickly, or they were going to go bad. I cut them in half, threw them in a pot of boiling water for about two minutes (blanched), then roasted with the rest. Still the best chicken recipe I've found.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Sarah's Dan's Mom's Lentil Soup

First, I want to talk about my friend Dan, who is, in case you're wondering, most definately THE MAN. Dan and I met a few years ago when I was working at a coffee shop. It wasn't until the past year or so that we have become friends. I LOVE to talk food with Dan, well, because...Dan knows food. Dan knows more about food than anyone I've ever met. And if Dan tells me to cook something, well, I'm going to cook it, no questions asked.
Dan is actually the one who got me thinking about starting this food blog. His blog is and if you don't subscribe to it, do it NOW. My blog is mostly about cooking for myself, but his covers a wide range of food topics including cooking, restaurants, food preparation, travel, and local fare just to name a few.
Dan re-posted his mother's Lentil Soup recipe the other day included in a blog about combining food and fond memories. His post brought back thoughts of all the ladies in my family crowding in the kitchen to get Thanksgiving Dinner on the table; or the long hot summer afternoons I would spend alone with my grandmother in her kitchen while we strung beans from her garden, and sang songs while a pot of applesauce simmered on her stove made with the apples picked fresh from her backyard.
This soup is every bit as good as Dan says. It was a perfect welcome meal to the Fall season. Thanks Dan.

Monday, October 12, 2009

It's Getting Cold, Make Some Chili!

The World Chili Cookoff took place right here in Charleston, WV this past weekend. Although I only made it to Sunday's red chili festivities, it was a day full of fun with good food and great friends. Mia & Tim (the Dorsey's as you all know them) and I met over at Rachel Cox's house for pre-cookoff bloody mary's. When we arrived at the Appalachian Power Park where the cookoff was taking place, Rachel happily informed us that she had V.I.P. tix waiting for us at Will Call which meant some free sampling tix and FREE BEER. Yay! Thanks Rachel!

As soon as we walked in the gates we saw our friends E and Slim, and well let's face it, who's not happy to see the Blackhursts? Beers all around, we headed towards the tents on the baseball field, and started immediately sampling. Some of the contestants had leftover green chili from the day before, so it was nice to have some variety. I didn't meet anyone from a foreign country (WORLD cookoff?), but I did meet some nice folks from Massachusettes, Colorado, Illinois and South Carolina. I made sure to ask each of them how they liked Charleston, and did not get one negative response. The girl from Colorado said, "the rolling hills are beautiful"...well yes I suppose compared to the Rocky Mountains they would indeed seem like hills to her. Everyone I talked to also said how friendly everyone from Charleston was, and what a nice place it was to visit. A big shout out goes to my friend Samanta Carney for organizing such a great high profile event for West Virginia!

We also ran into our friends The Dailey's (Megan and Matthew), which I was especially happy to see because they had their two awesome kids with them Victor and Alexander, who are growing like weeds...what are you feeding them Megan? :)

After the cookoff we all headed over to "the porch" at E & Slim's, which then turned into "the back patio" with the firepit ablaze. After a few more beers for everyone, the firepit was not the only thing "ablaze". We had our own little hot pepper eating contest right in the backyard...and I guess if I had to declare a winner it was Tim Dorsey, since he was really the only one who entered. First a whole fresh jalapeno, then a whole fresh cayenne, then E brought out a dried GHOST CHILI (the hottest pepper on the planet). It was all in good fun, but I'm sure Tim is still spitting flames as I type this. Hope you're feeling ok today Tim. All in all it was in fact a great day! Now onto the food...

Chili is not hard to make. There aren't a thousand ingredients. In fact, chili is one instance where less is definately more. As long as you have good ingredients and some time, it's a simple one pot meal that will last a few days for dinner or lunch. Plus chili always freezes really well.

Brown/cook 1/2 lb to 1lb LEAN ground beef in 2 tablespoons olive oil

Add, 1 Onion diced and 2 cloves garlic chopped

Cook down about ten minutes til the onion gets soft

Add 1 cup organic beef broth and two cups tomato sauce

Deglaze that pan and get it to a nice bubbly simmer

Add one can petite diced tomatoes, and beans of your choice (for this batch I used an organic tri-bean medley mix of kidney, navy and black I think)

Add about 4-8 tablespoons chili powder (depending on how "chili" you like your chili) and two tablespoons Emeril's Essence (I told you I love this stuff)

Cook the chili down to a nice thick consistency. The longer you cook it, the better it will taste.

Call some friends and serve it up with some bread, cornbread, etc...whatever your fancy.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Pork Roast with Bacon & Mushroom Gravy

I made this a few months ago for dinner party, and let me tell you...YUM-MEE!
By now you've noticed I'm a huge fan of Emeril Lagasse. I've been watching him on TV for years, and I love his cookbooks! What I love about him the most is that he puts a "comfort food" twist on foods that would normally be considered "gourmet". I watched him make this on TV, and decided I had to try it. I'm not going to lie, this recipe is time consuming, and is in NO WAY healthy (but oh so good). I would suggest making it on a Saturday or Sunday, and invite lots of friends over because it makes a ton. The night I made this was one of my favorite dinner parties. After the meal, we all sat around the dining room table drinking wine and laughing hysterically into the wee hours of the morning.
I served this with roasted garlic mashed potatoes, and homemade fresh greenbeans the way my granny used to make them. This meal is a winner, no doubt! Enjoy!
1 (5 pound) boneless pork loin roast
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon Essence or other Creole Seasoning
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
6 ounces thick cut bacon, diced
6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
1 rib celery, finely chopped
1 medium green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1 tablespoon minced garlic
8 ounces button mushrooms, thinly sliced
1 quart canned low-sodium beef broth
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
Season the roast evenly with 2 teaspoons of the Essence, the salt, and black pepper and rub into the meat. Do this the day before to intensify the flavors if you wish. Heat a cast iron Dutch oven (or just use a big skillet) and, when hot, add the bacon. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the bacon is crispy, about 6 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to paper towels to drain and set aside. Add the roast to the pan and increase the heat to high. Cook until the roast is evenly browned on all sides, about 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer the roast to a rack/roasting pan and bake at 350 until internal temp is about 160 degrees.
Add the flour to the pan (that you just seard the pork in) and cook, stirring constantly, until a roux the color of milk chocolate is formed, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the chopped onion, celery, bell pepper, and cook, stirring, until the vegetables have wilted, 4 minutes. Add the remaining 2 teaspoons of Essence and the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the mushrooms and cook, stirring frequently, until they have released their liquid, about 4 minutes. Add the beef broth and Worcestershire and bring sauce to a boil. Reduce the heat and keep the gravy warm until ready to serve. You may need to add a little more broth because it will thicken.
Once the roast is done, take it out of the oven and let it "repose" for about 15 minutes. This will allow all the juices to re-absorb into the meat. Slice the meat and ladel the gravy over it. Here's what happened to the gravy that didn't make it to the platter...
Sorry E had to do it!!! :0)

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Blueberry Streusel Pie

I don't bake very much. Well, let me rephrase that. I don't cook a lot of sweet stuff unless it's for a special occasion like a holiday, dinner party, or someone's birthday. I'm not one of those girls who's eyes bug out of her head when I see a box of chocolate. Personally, I'll take a bowl of mashed potatoes and gravy over a piece of cake any day. I do, however, LOVE LOVE LOVE anything with blueberries.
My friend Mia gave me a subscription to "Eating Well" magazine, and this recipe was included in my first issue. If you haven't read it, I highly recommend picking up a copy. They also have a very informative website on healthy cooking, and tons of recipes without sacrificing flavor. Another thing I like about Eating Well is they include the nutrition information with all of their recipes. And at 289 calories a serving, this pie "takes the cake".
Crust 1 cup all-purpose flour 1 tablespoon sugar 1/8 teaspoon salt 1 tablespoon butter 3 tablespoons canola oil 1-2 tablespoons ice water Streusel topping 3/4 cup all-purpose flour 1/4 cup sugar 1 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest 1 tablespoon butter 1 tablespoon canola oil 1 tablespoon lemon juice
Filling 1/2 cup sugar 1 1/2 tablespoons “minute” tapioca 1 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest 1 tablespoon lemon juice 5 cups fresh or frozen unsweetened blueberries
To make crust: Stir together 1 cup flour, 1 tablespoon sugar and salt in a medium bowl. Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Cook, swirling the pan, until the butter turns a nutty brown, about 30 seconds. Pour into a small bowl and let cool. Stir in 3 tablespoons oil. Using a fork, slowly stir the butter-oil mixture into the flour until the mixture is crumbly. Gradually stir in enough ice water so that the dough will hold together. Press the dough into a flattened disk. Place two overlapping lengths of plastic wrap on the work surface. Set the dough in the center and cover with two more sheets of plastic wrap. With a rolling pin, roll the dough into a circle about 12 inches in diameter. Remove the top sheets and invert the dough into a 9-inch pie pan. Gently press the dough into the bottom of the pie pan. Remove the remaining wrap. Fold the edges under and crimp. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and refrigerate while you prepare the streusel topping and filling. To make streusel topping: Preheat oven to 375°F. Stir together 3/4 cup flour, 1/4 cup sugar and 1 teaspoon lemon zest in a bowl. Add 1 tablespoon butter, 1 tablespoon oil and lemon juice and work in with your fingertips until the mixture forms small crumbs; set aside. To make filling and bake pie: Stir together 1/2 cup sugar and tapioca in a mixing bowl. Stir in 1 teaspoon lemon zest and 1 tablespoon juice. Add blueberries and stir gently to mix. Spoon the filling into the prepared crust. Cover loosely with foil and set in the middle of the oven, with a baking sheet placed on the rack below to catch any drips. Bake for 55 to 65 minutes, or until the berries are juicy and bubbling. (Frozen berries will take about 10 minutes longer.) Uncover the pie, sprinkle evenly with the reserved streusel topping and bake for 12 to 15 minutes longer, or until the streusel is golden. Cool on a wire rack.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Peachy Chicken in Garlic Wine Sauce

I know I know! I haven't posted a blog in TWO MONTHS! But trust me, I've been cooking more than ever thanks to a little chef competition my buddy E and I won. That's right, Charleston Market Iron Chef People's Choice. I did hear however through "word of mouth" that a particular opponent of ours (I won't mention any names, you know who you are) said something like, "Oh, people's choice, that doesn't really count". If you ask me, People's Choice is the ONLY vote that counts. If the PEOPLE aren't happy, then they don't eat your food. Let's see: Four Judges -vs- 150's a no brainer if you ask me. ANYWAYS...back to the peaches. Last week I was in the mood to COOK, but had no idea what to cook, nor had I anything to cook that wasn't frozen. I was cravin' FRESH. And what better place to get fresh ingredients than our own Capitol Market. So after work I strolled around the outside farmer's stands, and could not take my eyes off the PEACHES. A dish came to mind that my mother makes this time of year when the peaches are so yummy and beautiful: Chicken and Peaches in Champagne Sauce. Since I had no champagne (well actually I did, but if I open a bottle, I drink it all, and that's not a good idea on a weeknight), I decided to use the pinot gris I already had open. This was DEEEELICIOUS. So light and yummy, and the sweetness of the peaches complimented the JERK seasoning tremendously. I have to say some of my best meals have been cooked on a whim like this. Being able to walk around the market and just let the ideas come to me is the creative part of cooking that I just LOVE. I ate this with some rosemary and thyme roasted new potatoes and a piece of multigrain bread. Olive Oil One chicken breast pounded out to about 1/4" to a "cutlet" 2 TBS Jerk Seasoning 2 TBS Flour Mix the flour and jerk seasoning in a bowl and then dust the chicken with the mixture. Heat the olive oil to medium and saute chicken about 3 mins on each side. Remove the chicken from the pan and add: 2 Cloves Garlic chopped Cook for 3 mins or so...don't burn the garlic or it will tasted BITTER. Add one cup (or one wine glass that I just poured for myself) of white wine and deglaze the pan. Cook for about three minutes and get it boiling, then reduce the heat to medium low. Then add: 1/2 Small Fresh Red Pepper Strips 1/2 Sliced Fresh Peach 1 TBS Jerk Seasoning Fresh Parsley Fresh Rosemary 1 tsp sugar Cook while simmering about five minutes, then put the chicken breasts back in the pan with the sauce, cover with a lid, and cook another 7-10 minutes to let all the flavors marry each other. You'll need to adjust the taste to your liking after the peaches have cooked down and released their sweetness. TAH-DAAAAAAAAAA!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Fish Tacos with Tex Mex Corn on the Cob

The first time I heard someone say "fish taco", all I could think of was ground up fish meat with hot taco sauce and wilted lettuce. But thanks to our local eatery Tricky Fish, I have a new perspective on fish tacos. I LOVE THEM. They are a mixture of fish, fresh veggies drizzled with a good spicy sauce all snuggled up in a warm soft tortilla blanket.
Season the fish and grill it. I mixed lowfat sour cream and Chipotle Tobasco and a little lime juice for the sauce. Grill the soft tortilla (this makes a huge difference...yum). Add lettuce and pico and you've got yourself a fish taco.
Making meals with/in tortillas are easy for one. I always try to buy the resealable packages. I like the tilapia that is packaged in individual portions. Pop one out of the freezer and wah-lah...dinner! Oh, I also made my own jerk seasoning too. This stuff is almost as good as Emeril's Essence. I think it'd be good sprinkled on popcorn.
1 tablespoon onion flakes 2 teaspoons ground thyme 1 teaspoon dried parsley
1 teaspoon ground allspice 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1 teaspoon ground black pepper 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper 1 teaspoon paprika 1/2 teaspoon hot pepper flakes 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin 1 tablespoon garlic powder
2 teaspoons salt 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg 2 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons dried chives
To accompany my tacos last night, I found this recipe for Tex Mex Corn on the Cob. I don't think I will EVER eat corn on the cob just plain again. If I'd had another ear of corn, I would've eaten it. This was without a doubt the best corn I've ever had.
INGREDIENTS 1 ear fresh corn 1 teaspoon minced fresh cilantro 1/8 teaspoon chili powder 1/8 teaspoon grated lime peel 1/8 teaspoon salt 1/8 teaspoon ground cumin 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder Refrigerated butter-flavored spray Melt butter and stir in everything else. Roll your ear of corn in this combination of heavenly flavors!!!!
Instead of the butter spray, I used Fleishman's Olive Oil Spread (this stuff is great because it tastes like butter, but with the health benefits of Olive Oil)

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Spicy Chicken Flatbread Pizza

I am beginning to discover that the Spicy Red Pepper Cream Sauce goes well with just about anything. I don't feel so bad eating it either since I use olive oil and Fat Free Half & Half. So I decided to try a thicker version of the sauce and use it on a pizza. Just use a little less Half & Half when cooking the sauce. This is what happened....
1 Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast Shliced
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
2 Tablespoons Emeril's Essence
Heat your pan to medium high, add the olive oil, then the chicken, then the seasoning. Cook for about 8 minutes or so, until the chicken is done.
1 Pizza Stone*
1 Piece Multigrain FlatOut Bread (you can find these in the bakery section at Krogers)
1/2 Small Vidalia Onion Caramelized
1 Roma Tomato Thinly Sliced
1/2 Cup Spicy Red Pepper Cream Sauce (see link above for recipe)
2 Slices Muenster Cheese cut into strips
Fresh Chopped Cilantro
Low-Fat Sour Cream
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Then put your pizza stone in the oven to get it nice and hot (at least 15 minutes). Put the flatbread on the hot pizza stone and bake for about 10 minutes to get it crispy. If you don't do this before adding the toppings, you will have a limp crust...and let's face it, nobody like a limp anything. If you don't have a pizza stone, a plain metal baking sheet will do. Now layer (in this order) the sauce, chicken, caramelized onions, and sliced tomatoes onto the now crispy "crust".
Put it back in the oven for 12 minutes. Take it out and add the cheese. Bake another two minutes until cheese is melted. Garnish with fresh cilantro. Serve with a side of low-fat sour cream...YUM
*Do not EVER wash your pizza stone. It's kind of like an iron skillet. The more you cook on it, the better flavor/seasoning your food will have. Just wipe it off with a paper towel once it's cooled down.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Shrimp Risotto Cakes with Spicy Red Pepper Cream Sauce

I had about four cups of leftover Risotto Primavera (see previous blog), and this is what I did with it. Oh...My....God....YUM! Gotta give props to my buddy Chef E for inspiring the cream sauce!
Five Prawns peeled and diced
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil 1 Tablespoon Emeril's Essence (this stuff is good on just about anything)
Heat your pan and olive oil to medium high. Add the prawns and Essence. Cook for 2-3 minutes. Take out the prawn pieces. Don't cook them too long, or you'll have rubber shrimp bites.
Reserve leftover olive oil/spices. This is what you'll cook the cakes in.
Combine in a bowl:
Leftover Risotto Primavera
1 Egg
1/2 Cup Seasoned Breadcrumbs
2 Tablespoons Emeril's Essence
Cooked Prawn Pieces
Mix all of the above ingredients, and form six patties/cakes.
Reheat the pan you cooked the prawn pieces in along with about 1/4 cup olive oil to medium low.
(Preheat your oven to 250 degrees to keep cakes warm while you make the cream sauce)
Cook cakes about 6 minutes on each side. Don't flip them a hundred times. Put them in the pan, and leave them alone. Flip them only once! They are happy sizzling away. After they are done, put cakes on a baking sheet in pre-heated oven to keep warm.
Now...for the sauce!
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
1/2 Small Vidalia Onion Minced
1 FRESH Jalapeno Minced
4-5 Pieces of Roasted Red Pepper Chopped(I used the jarred peppers which are nicely sweet)
1 Tablespoon Flour
1 Cup Fat Free Half & Half
2 Tablespoons Emeril's Essence
Heat clean saucepan to medium. Add olive oil and onion. Saute for about 2 minutes. Add jalapeno and red peppers. Cook for another 5 minutes.
Add flour and Essence and stir well. Cook for two minutes, stirring often. Turn down heat to medium low and add the half & half. Cook for another 5-10 minutes, careful not to scorch. Add more half & half if the sauce is too thick.
Place two cakes on warmed plate, cover with sauce and garnish with FRESH CILANTRO!
Give leftovers to your friends!

Risotto Primavera

Sunday I was craving risotto. The trick to risotto is to KEEP STIRRING. It's a lot to ask to commit 30 minutes to just stirring, but trust me, it's so worth it. Lots of fresh veggies and creamy yummy risotto topped off with good parmesean cheese. Any or all of these vegetables make a wonderful combination. Tweek to your liking. I had considered a grilled chicken breast to accompany the risotto, but a nice piece of fresh multi-grain bread and a cold glass of Chardonnay made this a great Sunday meal.
Risotto Primavera
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
1 Cup Risotto (Arborio)
3 Cloves Garlic Chopped Fine
1 Tablespoon Herbs de Provence
4-5 Cups Hot Chicken Broth (keep this warm in a sauce pot on the back burner)
1/4 Cup each diced: onion, red pepper, yellow pepper, zucchini, carrot, frozen peas, mushrooms
1/2 Cup Grated Parmesean
Fresh Parmesean and Cilantro
Salt and Fresh Ground Black Pepper
Heat the pan to medium-low and add the olive oil. Add the risotto and saute for 3 mins until coated well in the olive oil, add the garlic and saute another minute or so.

Stir in one cup of chicken broth, and keep stirring. Turn the heat down until simmering. Keep stirring until all the liquid is absorbed. This should take about 5-6 minutes. Add another cup of hot broth and the Herbs de Provence.
Stir some more.
Continue to stir and adding the hot broth about a half cup at a time until you've got about one cup of broth left. Throw in about a half cup of white wine, the rest of the broth and all the veggies. KEEP STIRRING!
Keep stirring until all the liquid is absorbed. Add grated parmesean and stir stir stir! Garnish with freshly grated parmesean and fresh chopped cilantro.