Creamy, rich, slightly al dente risotto is so easy to eat. But standing over a stove, patiently coaxing as much starch as possible out of rice with lots and lots of stirring? Not so much. Risotto-making is a great way to warm up on gray winter weekends, but we’re in the bright, bold throes of spring, and I’d much rather get my warmth from sunshine.
Cookbook author and recipe developer Leah Vanderveldt has the perfect compromise in her latest book, The New Porridge—a creamy quinoa-lentil risotto that comes together with minimal stove-hovering.
“The pairing of red lentils and quinoa is perfect for a plant-based, protein-packed risotto,” she writes. “The lentils cook quickly and lose their shape, adding to the creaminess of the dish, while the quinoa provides a pleasantly nutty flavor and bite.”
To complement the velvety grains, Vanderveldt adds just-barely-cooked asparagus and peas along with a generous sprinkle of Parmesan. Each bite feels just as comforting as the real deal, but with a fresh, springtime crunch.
Vandervelt’s recipe says it serves two, but I found it to be a generous two. You could easily double the recipe and have a week of dinners (or lunches!), and still have time to enjoy the springtime sun.