Old Friends, Good Food
By: Cailly Morris
Cooking is a great excuse to gather old friends together and catch up. I hadn’t seen one of my best friends Nigel in a couple of weeks, so my roommate Theresa and I thought it would be a great idea to have him over and cook dinner together. But as usual, the hardest part of cooking in a group is deciding what you actually want to make.
Now, Theresa and I are big fans of tacos — in fact give us anything with cheese, sour cream and beef and we’ll devour it — but Nigel specifically wanted to stay away Mexican cuisine so it was back to the drawing board.
Typically when I go to look for a recipe I haven’t made before, I check out foodnetwork.com for some articles and advice on what to serve. For some reason this time around a three cheese risotto stood out. Theresa and I thought it would go great with hearty beef tenderloin.
We followed the recipe from foodnetwork.com pretty closely but we made a few changes.
First off — we didn’t have olive oil, so we substituted vegetable oil. No big change there. Then instead of using parmigiano-Reggiano, Romaino and Asiago cheese, we used a four-cheese blend mix (note: we also added about a ¼ cup more of cheese because let’s be honest…we love cheese).
For the beef — we aerated it and topped it with black pepper, rosemary and thyme. This is a great seasoning combination if you want just a hint of spice in your beef. We then cooked it for about 15 minutes at 450°, and then lowered it to 350° for another 30 minutes. Everyone’s ovens will be different, so the cooking time really varies. But typically, for medium rare beef, you want to cook it for 16-18 minutes at 350° per pound, after you have cooked it for the 15 minutes at 450°. Always use a cooking thermometer when you are cooking beef to make sure it is at the right internal temperature. Beef is usually served a little pink on the inside so it is difficult to tell when it is done, but if the internal temperature is at about 160° then you are good to go.
Try the recipe for yourself below!
Emeril’s Three Cheese Risotto Recipe Courtesy of Emeril Lagasse
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 cup chopped onions
- Salt and white pepper
- 6 cups chicken stock
- 2 teaspoons chopped garlic
- 1 pound Arborio rice
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 1/4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
- 1/4 cup grated Romaino cheese
- 1/4 cup grated Asigo cheese
- 2 tablespoons chopped chives
In a large saute pan, over medium heat, add the olive oil. When the oil is hot, add the onion and season with salt and pepper. Saute for 3 minutes, or until the onions are slightly soft. Add the stock and garlic. Bring the liquid to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Cook for 6 minutes. Add the rice and simmer for 18 minutes, stirring constantly, or until the mixture is creamy and bubbly. Add the butter, cream, cheese and chives. Re-season with salt and pepper. Simmer for 2 minutes and serve immediately.