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Brown Rice Breakfast Risotto With Walnut Topping

Brown Rice Risotto

Brown Rice Risotto

The latest Whole Foods Recipe Contest is all about breakfast and whole grains. The weather is starting to get warmer but decided to create a warming healthful breakfast for the last vestiges of cool weather. This is not a quick on the go sort of breakfast (unless you make it the night before), it takes a good 30-40 minutes to cook but when dealing with whole grains you expect to take a little longer to prepare. I used short grain brown rice, milk (almond milk works great also), dates to sweeten and topped with some maple sweetened toasted walnuts. I love risotto and breakfast risotto is wonderful, You can easily make this the night before (thats what do) and either serve cold or heat it. No added sugar, whole grain brown rice is a healthful way to start your day!
Serves: 2
2/1/2-3 cups milk or almond milk
1/2 cup brown arborio or short grain rice
3-4 medjool dates pitted and chopped The dates really sweeten this use less for lightly sweetened risotto.
2 tbs butter (One tbs to saute dates and the other tbs when risotto is finished)
pinch of salt
Garnish
1/2 cup walnuts
2 tbs maple syrup
Add milk to medium saucepan and bring to simmer on med/low heat or heat in microwave for 2-3 minutes to get it hot. Place butter  in saute pan, add chopped dates and cook until softened, add rice and saute until rice is coated with the butter approximately 3 minutes.
Slowly add the milk a cup at a time to the rice, stirring until milk is absorbed and adding more until all of it is used. Add the remaining tbs of butter. Rice will be toothsome, total cooking time is about 30-40 minutes  NOTE: I didn’t add any additional sweeteners, the dates did the job for me, add a little sweetener of your choice if you like. I always have extra liquid ready when making risotto, the whole grain brown rice takes longer to cook and may need more liquid, I needed the full 2 1/2 cups of milk.
While risotto is cooking, pre heat your oven to 350, line small sheet pan with parchment, place walnuts and maple syrup in a small bowl and toss to combine, spread on sheet pan and toast in the oven for 10 minutes or just until you can smell the nuts. Remove from oven and give a rough chop.
To serve: Spoon risotto into bowl, sprinkle some of the nuts on top, add fresh fruit also, I like blueberries.
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52 Comments Post a comment
  1. YUM. That looks and sounds delicious!

    April 8, 2013
  2. This is the kind of breakfast I would actually enjoy! Sounds great Suzanne 🙂

    April 8, 2013
    • Thanks Susie, it is nice but honestly I rarely have 30 minutes to make risotto in the morning so if I am making this the night before and either re heat or eat cold. It also would make really nice rice balls, add an egg, form into balls and fry, roll in some cinnamon sugar. I think that would be delicious!

      April 8, 2013
  3. Maria Stickel #

    This sounds fabulous! Did you hear about Annette Funicello? I think she was our 4th cousin!
    See attached.
    Maria

    April 8, 2013
    • Thanks so much, Yes, Mare emailed me that she passed. I knew she was a cousin but wasn’t sure to what degree. She was so sick, poor woman. A real Italian icon. RIP Annette!

      April 8, 2013
  4. What a great, healthy way to start the day!

    April 8, 2013
    • It is, I usually start the day lighter, a shake or smoothie but this is really good and sticks, you don’t get hungry for hours!!

      April 8, 2013
  5. What a wonderful idea – I’ve never even heard of sweet risotto. I love the combination of almond milk and dates. The only trouble is there’s no way I could wait 40 minutes for my breakfast while it cooked… I’d have passed out by then 😉 Maybe for a dessert served with fresh berries?

    April 8, 2013
    • Totally agree, I am usually running around in the morning no time to cook something this involved which is why I make it the night before and heat it up. It would make a lovely dessert also!!

      April 8, 2013
  6. This looks and sounds so good – wish i could wake up to that tomorrow morning!

    April 8, 2013
    • Thank you so much, it’s one of those stick to the ribs breakfasts but it is actually good for you!!

      April 8, 2013
  7. Very nice – I like the idea of breakfast risotto! I’ve been playing around with the idea of a savory steel-cut oat risotto, but haven’t perfected it yet.

    On another note, what’s the connection between these Whole Foods contests and Food 52? There’s obviously some connection between the 2 sites, but I’d like to know more.

    April 8, 2013
    • Thanks Lori, The savory steel cut oats sounds great, can’t wait to see what you do with it. Food52 and Whole Foods are partners, not sure of the intricacies of the partnership but they did announce it a little while ago, if you search in features you can read about it. Food52 has been working with whole foods for a while now, what we now call hotline used to be food pickle and there were kiosks set up in some whole foods stores where customers could ask questions and they would be answered by both food52 members as well as people who work for whole foods. I think the current partnership grew from that.

      April 8, 2013
      • foxeslovelemons #

        Just read all about it, makes more sense now! Thanks! Although now, you may have an extra competitor over on the Whole Foods site 🙂

        April 8, 2013
      • Oh I hope you do submit to WF! You are a fabulous cook and can’t wait go see your recipe

        April 8, 2013
      • foxeslovelemons #

        Thank you, Suzanne! Although I must say, I am struggling with these breakfast & cereal themes! My husband is the breakfast cook in our house, and it shows! I’ll be trying to whip up a last-minute entry for Food52’s cereal contest tomorrow (nothing like waiting until the last few hours!). We’ll see how it goes 🙂

        April 8, 2013
      • Me too, I love cereal but in milk, breading with cornflakes is good but it’s been done, and short of copying Momofuku’s cereal milk concoctions I am fresh out of ideas, breakfast for me is usually a shake or smoothie,

        April 8, 2013
      • foxeslovelemons #

        I’m the same way! I’m not a big breakfast eater (shame on me!). And I use cornflakes to bread things, but that’s definitely not ground-breaking! Definitely a tough contest theme this time around!

        April 8, 2013
  8. alisitaliankitchen #

    Scrumptious! You always have great recipes! A must make!

    April 8, 2013
  9. Oh, what a different kind of topping for risotto!

    April 8, 2013
  10. Love the different take on risotto and it looks delicious! Your blog is wonderful and I am looking forward to following along and reading more of your recipes.

    April 9, 2013
    • Thanks so much, I just started following your blog also, I am so happy we found each others blogs. Look forward to reading more!

      April 9, 2013
  11. LOVE this one, Suzanne! What a hearty, satisfying way to start the day. Dates are such a delicious sweetener, too. And topped with walnuts and syrup? Yes, please.

    April 9, 2013
    • Thanks its hearty and you don’t feel hungry for hours. The maple walnuts are great!!

      April 9, 2013
  12. That looks so delicious AND healthy Suzanne!! Love all the ingredients. I absolutely love risotto, but never have had a sweet one. Definitely sounds interesting and delicious and warm and comforting. I need to check out that contest.

    April 9, 2013
    • Thank you so much, it is healthy except for the butter (I can’t help myself) it is good and I love risotto. You have to check out the contest, it’s right up your alley. I am sure you will come up with a delicious healthful whole grain breakfast.

      April 9, 2013
  13. I would be quite happy to start the day off with this tasty looking risotto!

    April 9, 2013
  14. Looks. Fantastic, Suzanne.

    April 9, 2013
  15. Can I be angry ?? Because this post NEVER appeared on my wordpress reader !!!!!
    And what makes me angry more is that mom bought some brown rice lately and I was like “what can I cook/bake with this ?”. I was wondering and then : I saw this article just after Mom used the brown rice ! Life’s unfair !!

    BUT : I will buy brown rice at the grocery store next time !! This recipe Suzanne is exactly what I love to eat when I’m in NYC for breakfast. You Americans are the best for these kind of oatmeals ! I enjoy you’re photo so much : it looks so comfortable and I’m feeling like I’m just near you for breakfast (I think the towel on the left gives me this feeling !).

    Have a nice day my dear Suzanne (and enjoy reading the longest comment I’ve ever made on a blog haha)

    April 10, 2013
    • Oh no, that has happened to me before. I’ve missed posts and that makes me angry!! Thank you so much, I would love to make you a bowl of this risotto!! You have a wonderful day and thank you again.

      April 10, 2013
  16. sounds yummy! I love that it had dates in it.

    April 10, 2013
    • Yes dates are wonderful, they really sweetened the risotto and I love the flavor.

      April 10, 2013
  17. Breakfast Risotto sounds delicious! I love your creativity and your recipes always make me hungry – not sure if that’s a good thing haha 🙂
    Back when I lived in Houston, I absolutely loved shopping groceries at whole foods. It was the only store that carried good-quality ingredients.

    April 11, 2013
    • Thanks Julian, I love whole foods, my favorite place to shop. I lived in Houston also!

      April 11, 2013
  18. Sounds tasty and healthy!

    April 11, 2013
    • Yes, thank you it’s both. I am learning to like brown rice, for me having it in a sweet dish makes it that much better.

      April 11, 2013
  19. That looks so yummy!

    April 12, 2013
  20. Now that’s one hearty, healthy, sustaining breakfast! Wonderful. Though would have to be made the night before in my house, I’m rarely up to much cooking first thing!

    April 18, 2013
    • Thank you, it’s always made the night before here. I don’t have time in the morning to stand at the stove for 30 minutes or more, I hit the ground running and don’t stop until I drop at night.

      April 18, 2013
  21. I love whole grains for breakfast. What a great way to kick start your day!
    I also adore your pugs!! I have one of my own – he too is a kitchen buddy who never leaves my side. Tonight he was showered with pan fried bacon pieces as my stepson was helping with the fried rice – pure pug heaven!!!

    April 29, 2013
    • Thank you so much and thank you for visiing. What is your pugs name? They go crazy for bacon, well food in general but bacon is especially enticing. What a treat, Nando and Izzy are both diabetic so they can’t have too much but I do like to give them a piece as a treat every now and then.

      April 29, 2013
      • My pug is called Watson, affectionately known as Wattie.
        He is the best dog I have ever had! Every night after his dinner(I cook him lean turkey mince with carrots & broccoli) he makes a point of finding me to say ‘thank-you’ – a food lovers dream pet!!

        April 30, 2013
      • Wattie sounds like a very good boy and very well fed. I also cook for Izzy and Nando, they are senior both 12 years old (Nando is almost 13) and they have diabetes. I make them steamed chicken breast and grind raw veggies (broccoli, spinach, celery and carrot) in the food frocessor, mix with a little non fat plain yogurt and add some bone meal. Would love to see a pic of Wattie!

        April 30, 2013
  22. peter @feedyoursoultoo #

    Such a unique idea. Breakfast Risotto. Need to make this for a brunch (so I don’t have to start preparing it at 5 in the morning). Thx for sharing.

    October 23, 2013
    • No you don’t, I used brown arborio rice. It takes longer than white arborio. I actually make it par cooked the day before then finish it the day of and it works well. You can even make the whole thing ahead of time and re heat. Thank you.

      October 23, 2013

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