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or Debris Risotto: clearing out the last of the week’s leftovers and coming up with a lunch that didn’t require leaving the house.

  • 1/2 an onion, finely chopped
  • 1 Tbs olive oil
  • 3 strips bacon, chopped
  • 2 Tbs leftover pork chop sauce
  • Splash of white wine
  • 2 cups cooked short-grain rice
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup cooked black-eyed peas

Sautee onion and bacon in olive oil until bacon is browned. Add sauce and wine, bring to a boil, then add rice and stir until heated. Add cheese and stir until melted and well-mixed, then stir in peas and continue cooking until heated through (I microwaved the peas to speed up the process).

  • 1lb canned cut up mushrooms
  • 1 box Uncle Ben’s Wild Rice mix
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 can cream of chicken soup
  • 1 lb. country sausage
  • 1/2 cup cream
  • Seasoned salt
  • Tabasco, salt, pepper to taste

Cook rice according to package. Saute sausage and onions until brown & soft. Add cream, chicken soup, and spices. Mix in chopped mushrooms. Pour into casserole and bake 20 to 30 minutes until bubbly.

I know, I know–just spend the $0.79 for the package from the grocery store ($0.59 if you get the store brand). But in my ever-increasing aversion to overly processed food, I just can’t get past the ingredient list–MSG is one of the most benign-sounding ingredients. Plus, I picked up 20lbs of jasmine rice last summer at Sam’s.

  • 1/2 an onion, finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 1 Tbs olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp saffron threads crushed (measure THEN crush!)
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1 cup long-grain rice
  • 2 cups water
  • salt, to taste

Sautee the onion and garlic over medium in olive oil until soft and translucent, then add the spices and rice and sautee for a couple of minutes more. While the spices sautee, nuke the 2 cups of water to bring at or near the boil. Stir in the water, cover and reduce heat to low for 15 to 20 minutes or until all the water is absorbed. Add salt as needed.

I know, I know–I’m doing it wrong. I didn’t use arborio rice, and I didn’t gradually stir in wine/stock until done. That’s why its FAKE risotto.

  • 1/2 sweet onion, chopped
  • 1 Tbs butter (maybe–I didn’t really measure)
  • 3/4 cup white wine
  • 2 cups leftover rice (gasp! I used long-grain jasmine)
  • 2 Tbs fresh basil, cut chiffonade
  • 1/2 cup diced fresh mozzarella

Sautee the onion in butter over medium heat. When soft, add the wine, turn up the heat, and boil down. Add in the rice, reduce heat to low, cover, and stir occasionally until rice is heated through. Stir in the basil and the the cheese a little bit at a time until melted and well mixed.

This recipe is based on one from a Tuscaloosa News article by local chef Billy Kistler for the “Table for $20” column.

2 pork tenderloins
worcestershire sauce
soy sauce
liquid smoke
2 mangoes
1 small onion
1 sweet red pepper
1 bunch cilantro
1 lime
1 cup jasmine rice
ancho chile powder
garlic powder
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
olive oil

Preheat oven to 400F.

First, marinate the tenderloins. Place in a gallon ziplock with roughly equal parts worcerstershire and soy (I used about 10 dashes each) and a splash of liquid smoke.

Next, make the salsa: chop the mangoes, onion (I used a really small one, so go with half an onion here), pepper, and ciantro. Toss together and then add the juice and zest of the mango. Set aside.

Boil 2 cups water and add 1 cup jasmine rice. After 15 minutes, add ancho chile powder, cumin, garlic powder, and salt to taste. Stir well, and add the black beans. Cover, and let cook another 5 minutes to heat the beans.

Meanwhile, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat in an ovenproof skillet and brown the tenderloins (about 10 minutes). Then roast 10 more minutes in the oven.

Let the pork rest 10 minutes, then slice and serve over black bean and rice mixture and top with salsa (don’t be skimpy–use more salsa than the photo shows).