i recently whipped up a batch of carrot and cardamom risotto for fritz. i knew he liked carrots. i knew he liked grains. i had no idea, however, that he would take to risotto so enthusiastically. of all of the recipes i’ve made for fritz, this is the most labor intensive, though that is just due to the nature of risotto, which requires constant vigilance (a little dodgeball reference for your wednesday afternoon).
i’ve been slowly introducing fritz to the idea that his food can have flavor, and to do this i’m using spices and herbs. when concocting this recipe, i went through a whole series of compliments to carrots including sesame, coriander, and cumin. cardamom is one of my favorite spices though, and vastly underutilized in this country, so i went out on a limb. you will note that there isn’t a large quantity included and that is due to babies having a very sensitive palate. however, feel free to adjust the seasoning to meet the desire of your child.
carrot and cardamom risotto
- 1 bunch/bag organic carrots
- 3/4 cup of arborio or sushi rice
- 4 cups reduced sodium chicken stock
- 1/4 teaspoon cardamom
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
peel and scrub the carrots and then chop them into chunks. if using a beaba steamer fill the cup to “3” and steam. otherwise, steam the carrots in a pot fitted with a mesh strainer or a steaming basket (being sure to reserve water). puree the carrots, adding water to them to thin them out and maintain nutrients. mix in the cardamom, set aside.
heat the chicken stock in a pot over a very low flame.
in a large pan, heat the olive oil over medium high heat. add the rice and stir though to coat in the oil. cook the rice for 1-2 minutes until it takes on a toasty smell. begin to add the chicken stock about 1/2 cup at a time, stir through, and when it is absorbed (this will happen more quickly in the beginning of the process) add another 1/2 cup. continue to do this until all of the stock is absorbed and the rice is very soft (much softer than if it were being served to someone with a full set of teeth). turn off the heat and stir in the carrots. distribute into freezer trays (we use the beaba 2 oz. version) and freeze, or serve immediately. this will only keep in the fridge for a few days, so be sure to freeze it or use it as soon as possible.
notes: if this seems like a disproportionate amount of stock for 3/4 cup of rice that’s because it is. the rice needs to be a little softer than usual so that they babies can gum it. once your little ‘un gets some teeth you can use less stock and not let it get so soft. also, it should be noted that if an appropriate chicken stock is used, this recipe is gluten free!