Thursday, October 25, 2012

Roasted Grape Risotto with Adobo-Paprika Chicken

Ever since I've seen the commercial on the Food Network for it, I've been intrigued by the Roasted Grape Risotto recipe. However, the one I found on the internet calls for super expensive gooey bad-for-you cheese and a crazy amount of butter. I love butter and all, but risotto is rich enough! So I've tweaked the recipe and this is what I came up with:

5 chicken thighs
Adobo salt (I use Goya brand)

Roasted grapes:
half a bag of grapes
olive oil

3 cups of stock
1 cup of risotto
1/4 cup of good white wine
white balsamic vinegar infused with pear
parmesan cheese
1 big shallot, finely chopped
1 lemon, zested and juiced
1 tbsp of Smart Balance lactose free Omega 3 spread (or butter)

I took the skin off of the chicken thighs, and rubbed the thighs in generous amounts of paprika and adobo salt, then let sit for two hours. Preheat the oven to 400. I put the skin in a low heat pan with foil-wrapped bricks on top to cook the fat out. The result is a crispy skin with most of the fat cooked out into the pan, and the skin makes an excellent appetizer when dusted with bacon salt -- reserve 2 tbsp of the fat, toss about half of what's left, and then stir in some canola oil. Once the oil is hot (it doesn't take long), add the chicken thighs for about 2-3 mins on each side, or until browned. Put the whole pan in the oven when you start the risotto -- the amount of time it takes to make the risotto is about how long the thighs should be in the oven. .

I started off by roasting the grapes -- we cut the giant globe grapes in half to get the seeds out, then tossed in a drizzle of olive oil. I sprinkled with salt and a dusting of thyme, then popped in the convection toaster oven at 400 for about 8 minutes. I then moved the rack to the top rack near the broiler and let broil for a minute so that the skins browned slightly.

Put the reserved chicken fat in another pan, with a little canola or olive oil on medium high heat. Toss the shallot in, then add the risotto and salt and pepper to taste. Toast up the risotto in this mixture, and when it starts to stick to the pan, deglaze with half of the wine. After the wine cooks down, add the rest. While doing all of this, the chicken broth should be heating. I use a glass measuring cup, and I microwave the broth for time purposes. Stir the risotto while slowly adding the broth over time. Once all of the broth is absorbed, the rice should be starting to look like a risotto. Add the balsamic vinegar and stir well. Add as much cheese as desired (I used three 1-inch cubes grated up), then the lemon zest. Mix until the risotto has a slight bite but is soft and tender. At this point, the chicken thighs will be done. Take them out and let them rest.

Add the grapes and stir. Add the juice in, and remove from heat when risotto is soft all the way through. Finish with the SmartBalance spread and give it a final stir. Serve chicken on top of the risotto, and enjoy!*

*I wish I had taken pictures, but my husband and I were too hungry and I didn't think about it. But it was delicious!


  1. How great is this! I'm always looking for GF restaurants in Boston (surrounding area too) and new GF recipes! Look forward to your posts!

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