Mother’s Day…

Sunday was Mother’s Day. Happy belated Mother’s Day to all the mothers who deserve it. What to make for a mother who knows her way around the kitchen?

Well, my sister who cooks an elaborate meal 3-4 times a year decided to bedazzle us with a fancy lunch (which was yummy!), so I decided to make dinner pretty simple.

I made risotto for the first time on Sunday using a Jamie Oliver recipe. I like his cooking philosophy–relatively simple recipes that can be made by anyone. Instead of focusing on pomp, he’s all about good ingredients. Good ingredients = good food, very simple. I’ve never been a huge fan of risotto… honestly I think I’ve eaten it once in my life before Sunday… in fact, I don’t really care for rice all that much, but this risotto was yummy as hell. The commenters on his site weren’t exaggerating at all. The whole family liked it, and I plan on keeping this one for future use.

The only downside to the risotto is that it’s super rich. Cheese, wine and dollop of butter really pack on the calories, but for a nice treat every so often, there’s nothing in it really that should make you feel guilty. If you really want to make your risotto rock, especially for a first-timer, don’t multi-task while you cook it. Keep stirring the pot, so the grains don’t dry up, and so everything cooks evenly and stays creamy.

To accompany the risotto, I made another easy recipe, ratatouille. Ratatouille is just one of those magical (yes!) dishes that I love. It’s easy and it’s healthy, and somehow, vegetables that I’m not crazy about (zucchini, cooked capsicum ;)) come together in such a synergistic way to create a flavour that seems improbable (yet so delicious) to me.

As for the protein, we had lamb steaks. I left the lamb to my mother since she’s pretty adept at spicing lamb. It turned out delicious of course, and the combination of the lamb, ratatouille and risotto worked out quite well.

As for dessert… well… let me just advise people to never to make creme brulee without fresh cream. NEVER! Apparently, you shouldn’t freeze cream unless it has more than 50% fat in it. My cream said it had exactly 50%… and it looked fine until the creme brulee got into the oven. Then the fat separated and it was a greasy, nasty, chunky mess. The worst part was that I splurged and got real vanilla bean to use that day. What a waste! Save yourself the grief and use fresh cream!

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