Octopus Risotto

Octopus Risotto | Recipe by Be What We Love blog

Hello !! Long time no see, huh? Well, I’ve been super busy this summer with work and we also lost a very dear friend of our family, so there was nowhere else or nothing else we wanted to do than to be with our friends during this very sad time.

As our dear friend was an excellent cook and her passion for cooking and gathering friends was shown throughout her gorgeous kitchen and home, I went straight to my kitchen as soon as I got back last week and prepared various recipes for this blog. So, behold my friends, I WILL be posting once or twice a week from now on (oh well at least one can have hope).

I dedicate this post to our friend Faye and her precious family whom we love so much.

Some people find octopus to be quite intimidating, especially if they have to clean a fresh one. So I was in a mission to make this dish, which is popular in any coastal town from Brazil to Europe as easy as possible.

I have a strict rule in my kitchen, and that’s to buy as few canned products as possible, so octopus in a can, sounded to me as gross as canned beans (I know lots of people love canned beans but my Brazilian soul just can’t do it!) However, I was in a mission, right? So here I am at my local Whole Foods buying my octopus in a can. And wait for it…………..it’s DELICIOUS!! I might have to buy a few extra cans, and eat them as tapas on crostini. Yum!

Here is my version of Arroz de Polvo or  Arroz con Pulpo as they call it in Spain (or Octopus Risotto as we’d call it in the USA). Enjoy!

Serves about 3-4 people
Ingredients:

  • 1  can of octopus in olive oil 
  • 1 cup arborio rice
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • 1 tablespoon parsley, chopped
  • 1 tomato, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Drain octopus pieces, lightly fry them in a tablespoon of olive oil and a pinch of seasoning blend (2-3 minutes), and set a side in a bowl.
  2. Place the onion and tomatoes in a sauce pan with the rest of the olive oil on medium heat.
  3. Add the rice and fry for a minute or two.
  4. Now add the wine. Stir well and let it simmer. Stir occasionally and add warm chicken broth 1/4 cup at a time, adding more when the liquid is absorbed.  Keep adding broth and stirring until rice is tender (this should take 20-25 minutes). 
  5. Once done, turn off the heat and mix in the parsley.
  6. Add octopus on top of each serving or if you prefer, mix with the rice.

Bon Appétit!

Octopus Risotto | Recipe by Be What We Love blogOctopus Risotto | Recipe by Be What We Love blogOctopus Risotto | Recipe by Be What We Love blogOctopus Risotto | Recipe by Be What We Love blog

Pesto Bread

Pesto BreadCarb-free diets be damned, I love bread.  The smell of it baking, the taste of it warm with butter still melting in.  A well made sandwich is a work of art, but on home baked bread it’s enough to make Michelangelo cry.  So now that we’re finally (mostly) settled into our new house, we broke out the bread maker and treated ourselves to a fresh loaf. It’s been a little while since we’ve done any fresh bread other than popovers (check out our gruyère and cracked pepper or jalapeño and cheddar popover recipes), so we started out easy with the basic white loaf with a little bit extra and made this pesto bread recipe with our bread maker.

ingredients:

Makes one small loaf (about 1 pound)

Water, 80°–90°F – 3⁄4 cup
Olive oil, extra virgin – 1 tablespoon
Pesto – 3 tablespoons
Sea salt – 1⁄2 teaspoon
Bread flour –  21⁄4 cups
Granulated sugar – 1 teaspoon
Yeast, active dry, instant or bread machine – 11⁄2 teaspoons

directions:

Add the ingredients in the order listed and set your bread machine for small white loaf (NOT rapid).  I wish I had followed the rapid recipe, because waiting the nearly three hours for this to mix and bake was rough.  I dreamt of fresh bread for breakfast, but ended up with it for lunch.  Next time, I think I’ll add the ingredients the night before and set the times so I can wake to fresh bread… Share your favorite bread machine recipe links in the comments!

Pesto Bread Pesto Bread

 

 

Honey Lavender Cake

Honey Lavender Cake

What is it about bees that makes me love them so?  It’s funny too, because I hate insects, and get nervous around bees, but I love bees and honey in designs.  Maybe its the honey they make that’s got me so sweet on them.  How cute is this cake pan? I’ve been eying this pan for months, and finally I could resit no longer. Not only is it adorable, the squares are already nicely (almost) separated. This recipe takes that a page from the standard recipe on the pan, substitutes in greek yogurt to keep it moist, and adds a little lavender to give a slight floral lift to the dish.  And really, what goes better than bees and honey? Whatever you do, don’t skip the glaze.  When added just before serving it really brightens up the cake with the sweetness of the honey and the punch of lemon.  Serve with tea or coffee, and enjoy!

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 cups cake flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 tbsp  honey
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tbsp dried lavender flower (food grade)
  • 1 cup greek yogurt

GLAZE:

  • 3 tbsp honey
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice

directionS:

  1. Pre-heat oven 325˚F
  2. Grease flour pan
  3. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda e salt
  4. Beat butter and sugar on low speed, until light and fluffy
  5. Add eggs and beat until well-blended
  6. Add yogurt, flour mixture, lavender and mix on low speed for 1 minute
  7. Beat on medium speed for 2 minutes
  8. Pour in prepared pan, and bake for 45-55 minutes
  9. Let it cool in pan for 10 minutes.
  10. Prepare the glaze
  11. Brush honey-lemon glaze

Honey Lavender CakeHoney Lavender Cake
Honey Lavender Cake

Liège Waffles

Breakfast can be a hurried affair hastily thrown together, but when you can, taking just a little more time and attention sets the day on a great path.  These Liège Waffles take breakfast to that next level and make it a treat your breakfast table won’t forget. The pearl sugar really makes each bite pop with sweetness without being overpowering!

You’ll see in the second photo one of my new favorite kitchen gadgets for dusting with powdered sugar, the OXO Dusting Wand.  This was in my gift bag from the Food Blog Forum Orlando in February, though it’s almost been more of a curse than a gift, because I can’t stop myself from dusting everything with powdered sugar and other spices. It’s compact, inexpensive, and you can get a tighter more accurate dusting than the big powdered sugar shakers I’ve always had.

Liège Waffles

INGREDIENTS:

  1. 1 1/2 tablespoons light brown sugar
  2. 1 3/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
  3. 1/3 cup lukewarm water
  4. 2 cups all-purpose flour
  5. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  6. 3 large eggs
  7. 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  8. 2 sticks unsalted butter, melted (about 1 cup), plus more for brushing
  9. 1 cup Belgian pearl sugar

DIRECTIONS:

  1. In a small bowl, whisk the brown sugar and yeast into the lukewarm water and let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes. In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the paddle, mix the flour with the salt. Make a well in the center of the bowl and pour in the yeast mixture. Mix at medium speed about 1 minute. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing for 20 seconds between each. Whisk the vanilla with the 1 cup of melted butter. With the mixer at medium-low, gradually mix in the butter until smooth; the batter will be thick and very sticky. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the batter rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour and 45 minutes.
  2.  Stir the pearl sugar into the risen batter. Cover again and let rest for 15 minutes.
  3.  Preheat the oven to 250°F. Preheat a Belgian waffle iron and brush it with melted butter. Gently stir the batter to deflate. Using about 2 tablespoons of batter for each, cook the waffles according to the manufacture’s directions until they are golden and crisp; brush the waffle iron with melted butter as needed. Transfer the waffles to plates or keep them warm in the oven, then serve.

Liège WafflesLiège WafflesLiège Waffles