Edamame Risotto

I had the pleasure of trying Edamame Risotto one summer evening with my parents while we were having dinner at Meridian Hills Country Club. I instantly fell in love and have wanted it ever since. It was something about the texture that hooked me. Also, I love risotto and edamame, so putting them together just seemed like a genius idea and I was jealous I didn’t come up with it all on my own.

I concocted a recipe and have had it saved on my computer, waiting for the right time to make it. I am fairly picky still so I decided on my own ingredients and a mixture of a bunch of recipes. I also don’t measure because I think it adds to the adventure! I have always been told how hard it is to make a good risotto, so I wanted my adventure to be at the right time. What better time than a night spent drinking wine and celebrating two of my best friend’s birthdays!

The Edamame Cooked in Sesame Oil and Seasoned

The Risotto cooking (you have to be patient and constantly stir!)

I was surprised at how easy I thought it was to make the risotto. This dish, which seemed so complicated at first, was fairly simple and I can’t wait to continue to experiment with the flavors.

Edamame Risotto

Sesame oil

1 tbsp unsalted butter

1 cup Arborio Rice

2 cups (or more) shelled edamame

Soy sauce (reduced sodium)

Ground ginger

2-½ tbsp olive oil

½ cup white cooking wine

4 cups hot water

Crumbled goat cheese

Romano cheese

Dried basil

Salt and pepper

Heat sesame oil over medium heat (just enough in to lightly cover the bottom the pan). Once hot, add the edamame,  lightly cover in soy sauce, and add a few shakes of ground ginger. Continue to stir until the liquid has evaporated and let cool.

Heat olive oil and butter in a large pan. Add the rice and coat in oil. Toast the rice for about 3 minutes. Reduce heat and add some garlic powder (a few shakes) and the white wine. Once the wine has evaporated, add in 1 1/3 cup of hot water. Stir continuously until the water has evaporated and the consistency is creamy. Continue this process two more times. Remember to keep stirring. Once the rice is creamy, but still slightly firm, remove from heat.

Add the cooked edamame, Romano cheese, basil (to taste), and some goat cheese (to taste). Season with salt and pepper and Enjoy!

Toasted Coconut Chocolate Cookies

Last weekend I was home in Indy and spending the day with my mom at home. She wasn’t feeling well, so I decided to bake while we spent time together! She had a recipe for some Chocolate Coconut cookies she found and was really wanting to try them, and luckily we had all of the ingredients!
I can’t wait until I have a big kitchen where I can have all kinds of baking ingredients and cooking tools on hand at all time. My kitchen now is pretty tiny and the more ingredients/tools I keep buying the smaller it seems to become. The cookies were fairly simple to make and turns out they are delicious!
My mom told me about a trick she read somewhere about how to make your cookies extra fluffy and to give them great shape. Once your dough is made, cover and put in the refrigerator over night. When you take out the next day to bake, the dough should rise perfectly in the oven and it will be easier to give them a good shape before baking!
We were instantly craving the cookies, so I didn’t wait, but next time I will try it out and let you know if it makes a difference. I took them to my Grandparent’s for Sunday dinner and everyone loved them. My Grandma even said they may be her favorite cookie so far, so I am sure I will be making these more often!
Toasted Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies

Toasted Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies

Preheat oven to 350º – Makes about 20 cookies
1 cup flaked sweetened coconut
4.5 ounces all-purpose flour (about 1 cup)
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp salt
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 ounces dark chocolate, chopped
Cooking Spray
Put coconut in a small baking pan (in a single layer) and toast in the oven for about 7 minutes, or until golden brown and stir once. Remove from oven and let cool.
Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl and blend with whisk. Set aside.
Place brown sugar and softened butter into a mixing bowl and beat on medium speed until well blended. Beat in vanilla and egg. Add the flour mixture and beat on a low-speed until everything is combined. Stir in the coconut and the chocolate.
Cover the mixture and leave in the refrigerator over night. This helps to make the dough stick together and will make your cookies fluffier when you bake them.
When ready, put dough onto baking sheets (spray is optional) about an inch apart. Bake at 350º for 10 minutes.

Last night I made dinner for some of my friends to celebrate their birthday’s. They are all starting to turn 25 and it is making everyone a little on edge…25 used to seem so old, but I don’t feel old and I don’t think they seem old…hopefully I will say the same thing when we are all turning 30! Anyway, I made Edamame Risotto so stayed tuned for that AMAZING and fairly easy recipe!

Fall into the Kitchen!

Fall happened in the blink of an eye. I’m not sure if it is because Chicago’s weather has been all sorts of crazy or because I was so busy I didn’t notice that all of a sudden winter was quickly approaching! Snow is in the forecast for tonight…and I don’t think I am exactly ready for that kind of weather yet…or ever!

Life has been extra busy lately with work, travels and one of my favorite Holidays, Halloween! For my costume on Friday night I was spaghetti, which I thought was only fitting! The costume consisted of red and white checkered tablecloth (dress) with spaghetti falling off my shoulders and a bowl of spaghetti and meatballs on my head. I am sure there is a picture  somewhere, but as of now I regret I have nothing to share with you! I was planning to wear it again on Saturday, but it was sadly destroyed and had to be thrown away. Apparently Laura and I have no business going into fashion design because our attempt at making it a little “cuter” failed miserably. Luckily I had a back up costume from college and was able to quickly throw on a flapper outfit!

On Halloween I carved pumpkins with some friends and Laura made White Chicken Chili in her crock-pot. I had never had chili before and was glad I tried it! We did some cool designs on the pumpkins and I am pretty proud of my spider!

One of my best friends, who remain nameless, has been staying at our apartment for the past month or so while she looks for a job in Indianapolis and continues to work here. It’s been so wonderful having her here so we have been trying to take advantage of the time we have left all living here in Chicago together (my three best friends growing up and I all actually live in the same city again after 6 long years!) and we try to make dinner together once a week. Last week, my friends made the best appetizer ever! Goat cheese and Zucchini bread.  It was delicious and I can’t wait to make it myself one day!

Goat Cheese Zucchini Bread


Goat cheese


Olive oil

salt & pepper

Loaf of bread (we used fresh bread from Jimmy Johns)

Heat oven to 350º. zucchini into pieces and lightly saute in olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Once slightly browned, removed and put on a baking tray. Put bread and zucchini in the oven for about 5 minutes until zucchini is cooked and bread is warm. Slice bread into pieces, cover in goat cheese and top with Zucchini. Enjoy!

If you ever need a quick appetizer or want a creative way to snack – this is perfect! This may not be an italian recipe, but I love zucchini and am glad I now have a new way to enjoy outside of pasta or alone!! Check out some of the fun I’ve been having this Fall…I can’t believe it’s almost time for Thanksgiving!! I know my family will soon be gathering to make hundreds of homemade ravioli’s for our Thanksgiving dinner and for Christmas. I am sad I won’t be there to help this year, so I am thinking my next kitchen adventure will have to be making my own ravioli!

Michigan Avenue

IU Homecoming & Carroll-Anne’s Homecoming reunion (she has been in Africa the past two years!!)