So I watched Food Inc last night.

I'm about a year late to the party on this one,

It's something you need to watch
to help you seriously evaluate what you are eating.

Now, now...
don't roll your eyes at me
because I'm that girl
who is constantly filling up your newsfeed with food porn.

I'm not someone who lives by rigid diets
or can promise that I am intentional about everything I eat.

BUT, I make sure that whenever I eat something-
it's not overly processed.

I pay a little more to get a little less food
because I want to consume for food that is a higher standard.

And after watching FOOD Inc, I'm even more committed to this idea.

It's so important to support food industries that produce pure food.

I used to think we did it to help them, 
you know- support the poor little farmer & his farm.
But I've come to realize that we need to support local farmers
for the very selfish reason that our bodies need "real" food.

The US doesn't make it easy for the average family to make this choice, I know...
I noticed this when I offered to replicate the same meal I make here almost every week 
while home in the States over Christmas.

Here in England, I can roast a free-range chicken, make a salad, 
roast various organic vegetables, get a baguette & butter all for £10.

It cost me $50 to buy the same things at Whole Foods in the States.

But the standard is just so different in the UK
because the people don't put up with lower quality food.

And they might gag if the stumbled upon 
a 10 foot space section of a grocery store devoted entirely to Pop Tarts.

Anyway, it's a lot to think about...
but it's worth your time to consider.

In the meantime, here is something that you can make that is simple & delicious.

I adapted it from the amazing risotto Helena made me recently for dinner.

I know risotto can be daunting if you've never made it,
but, please, don't fear the risotto... embrace it. 

Ingredients, serves 4:

four or five cups of chicken broth/stock
an onion, finely chopped
a clove or two of minced garlic
2 cups of arborio rice
1.5 cups (or a small bottle) of Champagne... or any sparkling white wine you can find afford
a bit of kosher salt
pinch of black pepper
a cup of fresh parmesan (no, not the kind from the can. the real kind.)
a handful of mushrooms, sliced (optional)
a bunch of asparagus, cut in segments & washed really well to get all crunchy dirt bits off (a tragic mistake I made the first time I made this)
lemon (but only if you have one lying around)


Get a pot of warm chicken stock simmering on your stove.
Melt a small chunk of butter in a separate stockpot over medium-high heat.
Add in a chopped onion & your garlic. Cook until the onion is transparent.
Now add in the rice and stir until the rice starts to look transparent- about 5 minutes.

Add your champagne. Stir & allow the rice to absorb the liquid.
Now ladle in a cup of warm chicken stock.
Stir in the stock. Continuously stir until the stock is absorbed.
Continue this step several times until the rice is softened upon taste... you may think it will never happen, but it will! It just takes some love & about twenty minutes. Just keep stirring & loving on it.

Meanwhile in a skillet, toss in the lardons (pancetta/bacon/whatever). Let it brown.
Remove the bacon- add the asparagus & mushrooms. Let them cook in the leftover bacon goodness
& a splash of the chicken stock. It will help soften them up as they cook. 
Squeeze a lemon wedge over them for a bit of extra flavor.

When the rice is cooked, but is still slightly firm, take it off the heat. 
Grate in your parmesan. Toss in salt to taste. Throw in pepper.
Now, add in the bacon, mushrooms & asparagus. Stir to combine. 

Serve yourself a manly portion. Feel like a lady. 

*all images original to Aspiring Kennedy
**no, i'm not a dietician or politician. please don't hold me accountable to have the knowledge of one.

Posted on July 22, 2012 and filed under "delicious dish", "make your life better", "tasty".