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Risotto, Spinach and Kale Cakes with Parmesan

Risotto, Spinach and Kale Cakes with Parmesan

EAT, family meals By October 5, 2013 Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , No Comments

We think these little cakes have everything going for them, from their portable size to their delicious Parmesan flavour. This hearty risotto also gets a dose of my favourite superfood, kale. Two-bite wonders, they’re a great lunch packed up with some fruit and cut vegetables. You can also serve these little bundles alongside eggs at breakfast or as a side with dinner.

This recipe was excerpted from the great new cookbook entitled How to Feed a Family: The Sweet Potatoes Chronicles Cookbook, by Ceri Marsh and Laura Keogh.  As two urban, working moms, Ceri and Laura learned quickly how challenging healthy meal-times can be. So they joined forces to create the Sweet Potato Chronicles (, a website written for, and by, non-judgmental moms, packed full of nutritious recipes for families.  The phenomenal cookbook is available across Canada at Chapters Indigo.

Prep time:  30 minutes
Total time: 1 hour
Makes:       about 8


5 cup  (125 ml) arborio rice
1 Tbsp   (15 ml) butter
4 cup (60 ml) chopped onion
3 cloves  garlic,  minced
1 cup  (250 ml) chopped kale, fresh or frozen
1 cup  (250 ml) chopped spinach, fresh or frozen
5 cup  (125 ml) grated Parmesan cheese
2 eggs

Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Using a nonstick  spray, grease a muffin  tin.

Cook the arborio rice according to the package directions. If you’re using fresh greens, wash and remove any tough stems then chop. If your greens are frozen, thaw them for a few minutes and squeeze out any liquid.

Meanwhile, in a small frying pan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onion  and garlic. Sauté for 2 to 3 minutes, or until the onion is translucent. Add the kale and spinach and sauté for about 5 minutes. Transfer this mixture  to a food processor and pulse until finely chopped.

Transfer to a medium-size bowl and add the rice and cheese. Beat the eggs and then add to the rice. Stir to combine. Pour the mixture into the prepared muffin tin, leaving about 1 inch  (2.5 cm)  space  at the  top. Place in the oven and bake for 18 to 20 minutes, or until  the egg is set and the edges are golden brown.

Allow to cool for a few minutes. Loosen the edges with a knife and turn  the cakes onto  a plate. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator  for up to 4 days.


Feast Rice

EAT, family meals By October 19, 2012 Tags: , , , , , , 1 Comment

Kids Feast RiceJennifer Low has a belief in teaching kids to cook healthy and fun meals and has developed 100 brand new recipes that use no sharp knives, no stove-top cooking and no motorized appliances.  In her new book – Everyday Kitchen for Kids, she encourages children to experience the thrill of cooking for the first time.  If you like Chinese fried rice, this recipe for Feast Rice—often served at big parties or feasts—lets you try out cool Asian ingredients to make your own version without any frying.


microwave-safe 1 1/2-quart (1.5 L) glass or ceramic baking dish, measuring cups, measuring spoons, baking spatula or wooden spoon, ordinary teaspoon, foil (or lid of baking dish), bowl, fork, kitchen scissors, oven mitts


1 1/2 cups (375 mL) chicken or vegetable broth
2 Tbsp (30 mL) oyster sauce
3/4 cup (185 mL) long-grain white rice
1 Tbsp (15 mL) vegetable oil
1/2 tsp (2 mL) finely chopped garlic (from jar)
1 cup (250 mL) frozen mixed peas and diced carrots (or ask a helper to dice fresh carrot and celery)
1/4 tsp (1 mL) sesame oil
2 eggs
1 Tbsp (15 mL) milk pinch of salt
1 stalk green onion

Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C).

In the baking dish and using a baking spatula or wooden spoon, mix the broth and oyster sauce. Heat in the microwave on high for 1 minute.

Remove the dish from the microwave. Using an ordinary teaspoon, stir in the rice, vegetable oil, garlic, peas and carrots, and sesame oil.

Spread out the rice evenly in the baking dish, then cover tightly with a lid or foil. Get help putting the dish in the oven. Bake on the middle rack of the oven for 30 minutes.

In the meantime, place the eggs, milk, and salt in a bowl and beat with a fork.

After the rice has baked 30 minutes, get help removing the lid or foil. Pour the egg mixture onto the middle of the rice. Do not stir. Cover the dish again and bake for another 10 to 15 minutes, until you can’t see any more liquid (If you are using a glass dish, you can see if there’s liquid bubbling around the sides of the rice. If you can’t see through your baking dish, ask a helper to help you check if the liquid is gone.)

Get help removing the dish from the oven and taking off the cover. Use kitchen scissors to snip the green onion into small pieces about the size of your smallest fingernail onto the rice. Throw away or compost the roots. Wear oven mitts, or get help, to stir the rice with a fork to fluff. Eat while warm.

Makes 4 cups (1 L).

Jennifer is inviting kids to send in pictures of their favourite recipes from the book to her website

Excerpted from Everyday Kitchen for Kids (Whitecap Books) by Jennifer Low
Photo by Ryan Szulc from Everyday Kitchen for Kids (Whitecap Books)


Mushroom Risotto

EAT, family meals By November 13, 2011 Tags: , , , , , , No Comments

What are the cooler months without comfort food?  Mushroom Risotto is amazing for families and needn’t be as intimidating as it often seems.  Kids can help ladle, and you and even form their meals into balls – or make a shape with a cookie cutter on their plate.

Heat 4 cups of stock in a separate pan.  Make sure the stock is hot or it won’t absorb quickly enough.  Chop 2 onions and 2 cups mushrooms.  Melt 2 oz. butter in risotto pot.  Grate 4 oz. parmesan cheese.  Add diced onions and cook until translucent.  Add 2 cups of risotto to the pot and coat grains with melted butter.  Add stock one ladle (cup) at a time.  Make sure it is absorbed each time before adding more.  Add 1 cup white wine early in the liquid process.  Stir constantly.  (We like flat bamboo or wooden spatulas.)  Taste the risotto and wait until al dente (a bit tough in the middle).  Add mushrooms.  (or asparagus, peas, mint).  Melt 4 knobs of butter, and or 1 cup of cream, along with the grated parmesan at the end just before serving.  Total cooking time: 25-30 minutes.  A risotto pan makes it a tad quicker.