baked brown rice risotto with leek and smoked gouda

by Chen

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Feel overly energized? Make risotto.

There might be no better way to solve the problem than standing next to the stove and stirring a pot of rice for at least half an hour, and you end up with a delicious and comforting meal. But I prefer to save my energy for homework.

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An alternative way to preparing risotto is to start and finish cooking on the stove while leaving half of the work to the oven. The resulted texture is equally satisfying, and the combination of sweet leek and creamy and buttery gouda yields a remarkable taste, especially for those who are not very into parmesan in the traditional risotto.

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baked brown rice risotto with leek and smoked gouda
makes 4 servings

2 tbsp EVOO
2 leeks, white and light green part only, diced and thoroughly rinsed
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup short grain brown rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
3 1/2 cups warm low-sodium chicken stock, divided
3/4 cup diced smoked gouda cheese
salt and pepper
minced chives for serving

Preheat the oven to 400F.

Heat the oil in a 3-qt dutch oven or oven-safe pot over medium heat. Add the leeks to the pot along with a pinch of salt. Cook until softened. Add the garlic and rice to the pot. Continue to cook until the rice smells toasted. Deglaze the pan with wine. Stir and cook off the liquid. Pour in 2 1/2 cups chicken stock and turn the heat to medium-high and bring to a simmer. Cover the pot and transfer it to the oven. Baked for 30 minutes; stir once halfway through.

After 30 minutes, carefully remove the pot out of the oven and return it to stove. Turn the heat to medium and pour in the remaining stock. Stir and cook until almost all the liquid evaporates. Turn off the heat and stir in the gouda cheese until melted. Adjust salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately with minced chives.

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