Rigatoni alla Scarmorza

My general culinary mindset over the past ten or so years has moved progressively in the direction of being lower and lower carb. Even if I don’t always use the substitutions I discover, my mind is always striving toward finding a logical and tasty low-carb substitute for foods that I eat. In recipes, even when I don’t eliminate carbs completely, I will reduce, for instance, using one tablespoon of sugar, rather than two. Some substitutions have proven to be more trouble than simply eating the carb less often–making cauliflower rice is such a to-do that I simply eat real rice, but on fewer occasions. But there is one carb for which there is no reasonable substitute; I only eat is once or twice a week on “cheat” days, but it is such a stronghold of my culinary repertoire, I simply cannot abandon it in my regular diet.


My relationship with pasta began with the common childhood infatuation with macaroni and cheese, but it has evolved to the point where pasta dishes are one of my strongest aptitudes in the kitchen. Somewhere along the line, I reached a threshold where I stopped ordering pasta at restaurants altogether because I could make any of my favorite pasta dishes easier and cheaper at home. The only time I eat pasta at a restaurant is when they make fresh pasta in-house; I do make my own fresh pasta at home on occasion, but it’s enough of a production to merit an appreciation of the restaurant variety.

But when it comes to any dish made with boxed store-bought pasta, my kitchen is the the only source. In part, it’s because I know every restaurant that serves boxed pasta is buying it for $1 from the same grocery store I am—that voluminous plate of pasta for $18 at your favorite mid-scale restaurant is a much bigger value-cheat than the $32 crab cakes.

More and more, however, the larger issue at hand is a particular proclivity I have developed over the years—I am an extreme al dente snob. It started when I spent a summer in college as roommates with a Mediterranean gal. It’s only grown since then. I like my boxed pasta extremely al dente. Fresh pasta is another story completely—I can enjoy a doughy fresh ravioli because it’s a completely different context. Only boxed pasta carries with it the culinary promise of al dente in the extreme.

Most pasta recipes I find online are a “no sweat” version of something I’ve tried before, or at the very least a novel re-combination of ingredients I’ve used before: “Okay, cool, so they put chicken in that…” or “…mushrooms in that…” etc. or “That’s a neat combination of spices, I’ll have to try that…”

This week, however, I ran into a recipe for a pasta dish that’s a bit apart from what I’ve tried before. It’s not so much that the methods were especially new or tricky (it’s not like we’re talking true from-scratch carbonara), but rather the ingredients were of a special caliber. At it’s heart, it’s a basic cheese-based cream sauce with stuff added. But the obtaining of the stuff was something of a challenge—many of the headlining ingredients were not available at my grocery darling, the Aldi. And many of the key ingredients were higher-brow. This was a luxury pasta dish, not an average Friday night pasta dish. That’s not to say I would pay $18 for it at a restaurant, but it presented an exciting project for my weekday grocery runs and my weekend test-kitchen.

Some ingredient notes. Scarmorza, as it turns out, is a particular type of Italian cheese that is similar to mozzarella and is often, but not always, smoked. In all the recipes I found for this dish, the smoke-flavor component was a large part of the taste-profile. Additionally, most recipes simply called for smoked mozzerella—which was hard enough to find, let alone a trip down to the Strip district in search of true scarmorza. And so, fresh smoked mozzerella is the key cheese in my recipe.

Secondly the recipe calls for peas, but I am not a fan of peas. I substitute shelled edamame for peas in most other recipes, and so I did the same here.

Lastly, the original recipes all call for prosciutto. But I feel like it’s something of a sin to bury prosciutto in a dish with so much other strong flavors, so I got pancetta cubes instead.


2 tablespoon unsalted butter
one medium onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup dry white wine
2 tablespoons flour
2 cups half & half or heavy cream
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon fresh black pepper
1/2 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano, grated
1/2 cup smoked mozzarella, grated
1/4 cup pancetta or prosciutto, diced
1/2 cup peas or shelled edamame
1/2 cup pistachio nuts, coarsely chopped
Fresh cracked black pepper
1 pound rigatoni pasta

Melt butter in a medium saucepan. Saute the onions until soft. Add the garlic. After a few minutes, deglaze with the wine. Add flour and stir until onions and garlic are coated. Add cream, salt, pepper, and cheeses. Once cheeses have melted, process with an immersion blender until smooth.

Meanwhile, cook the peas or edamame, if needed. Cook the pasta to desired done-ness. Drain the pasta and toss with sauce, peas/edamame and pancetta/proscuitto. Garnish with chopped pistachios and fresh ground pepper. Serve and enjoy!

This recipe turned out quite well, and I will likely make it again. However, I will note that it turned out well in an entirely predictable way. My pasta-with-cheese-sauce skills are pretty solid, and this dish was as good as any other that I make regularly. The extra ingredients—pistachios, pancetta, edamame—added some pleasant flavors, texture and color to the dish. But ultimately there was nothing about this dish that turned out especially amazing or surprising. It was worth the trouble of hunting down some harder-to-find ingredients, but in my opinion would not be worth $18 a plate at your local Italian eatery.

Bell Pepper Pizzas

Some low-carb substitutions are easier than others, and one of the most difficult is pizza. One option is a lower-carb baking mix to make the pizza’s crust, but any baking mix is going to have a significant enough carb count, even if it is lower than average. The Internet is teeming with recipes for cauliflower-based pizza crust, but those tend to be very labor-intensive, requiring cheesecloth to squeeze the cauliflower dry before the crust can even be assembled. That’s just too much fuss for my taste.

I prefer a more elegant low-carb solution, and the cauliflower crust seems forced. More up-my-alley are the suggestions to use a whole food, already somewhat pizza-sized and -shaped, as a base for a personal pizza. Portobello mushrooms, for instance, or a thick slice of eggplant. The one, however, that most caught my interest was the prospect of using bell peppers. The idea behind bell pepper pizzas is, essentially, to combine the logic of a stuffed pepper recipe with that of a personal pizza.


3 bell peppers
3/4 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
1/3 cup pizza sauce or spaghetti sauce
1-2 roma tomatoes, sliced thin
pepperoni or other topping
6 provolone slices

Preheat oven to 400. Cut the bell peppers in half; remove stems and seeds. Line a large casserole pan with tin foil or parchment paper. Arrange the bell pepper halves, insides up, in the casserole pan.

Sprinkle the shredded mozzarella over each bell pepper half. Roast at 400 until the cheese is golden brown, about 20-30 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool some.

Put one or two tablespoons of red sauce in each pepper. Add roma slices. If using a topping, such as pepperoni, put some inside the pepper and reserve some for on top. Cover each pepper with a round slice of provolone. Add toppings on the provolone.

Bake in the oven for another 20 to 30 minutes until the cheese is melted and a bit golden brown. Serve and enjoy!

These turned out quite well. Since roasted red peppers are one of my favorite pizza toppings, it should come as no surprise, I suppose. The bell peppers created a great base for the pizza in terms of size and shape, added an excellent complementary flavor without adding significant carbs. Much recommended!

Italian-style Meatballs

It’s hard to go wrong with Italian meatballs. While not a difficult recipe to pull off with some success, there are some subtleties that can make a big difference in your result.


1/3 cup breadcrumbs
1/3 cup milk
1 large egg, slightly beaten
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano (optional, or to taste)
A few sprigs fresh parsley, snipped
2 lbs. ground meat
1 (24 oz) can tomato-based spaghetti sauce

Soak the breadcrumbs in the milk for at least 30 minutes. Do not skip this step. Well-soaked breadcrumbs will make a huge difference in your meatballs.

Mix the remaining ingredients in with the soaked crumbs. Form into meatballs. Brown the meatballs in a skillet. Finish cooking in a large saucepan or crockpot with tomato-based spaghetti sauce.

Parmesan Risotto with Cauliflower Rice

One of the staples of my recipe collection is risotto. I don’t always make it according to the “rules” (I often use long-grain instead of arborio rice, don’t hate me!), but slow-cooked skillet rice in a creamy, broth-based, wine-based sauce is perhaps second only to pasta with cheese sauce in my kitchen repertoire. It is a recipe that’s easy to change up, use a different cheese, add some vegetables (or occasionally fruit!), toss in some nuts, try a different spice mix… risotto is endlessly adaptable and delicious, but it sure as heck is not low carb.

My collection of successful cauliflower “rice” recipes continues to grow: Cilantro Lime “Rice,” Cauliflower Jambalaya, Tabbouleh Salad, Vegetable Biryani, Mexican Rice, etc. Is cauliflower “rice” risotto a real possibility? My greatest successes with substituting cauliflower for rice have come with dishes where I keep the cauliflower raw — it stays crispy, doesn’t leak too much water into the dish, doesn’t become slimy. I’ve encountered some cauliflower “rice” risotto recipes online, but they involve cooking the “rice” in the same manner one would with a traditional risotto, and I just can’t imagine that working out okay without facing the same consequences I’ve experienced when cooking cauliflower “rice.” Would it be possible to make the risotto as a sauce, sans cauliflower first, and then add the raw cauliflower at the end?

I set to finding out.


6 cups cauliflower rice
2 tablespoons butter
1 onion, chopped
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1/2 cup white wine
3 bouillon cubes
1/2 cup cream or half & half
2 cups shredded parmesan or other white italian cheese
salt & pepper to taste

Rice your cauliflower. Fold into a clean kitchen towel and set aside.

Heat butter in a skillet. Saute the onion and garlic until softened. Add the white wine and bouillon cubes. Simmer until the cubes are dissolved and wine reduced by half. Add cream, cheese, salt and pepper. Simmer over low heat until cheese is melted. If the cheese gets clumpy as it melts, use an immersion blender to smooth it out. In the end, the cheese sauce should be thick and somewhat tacky, a good layer sticking to the spoon as you stir.

Allow to cool a bit. Still in the cauliflower rice. If you want to heat the rice up a bit, put the entire risotto mixture in a large, shallow casserole and heat uncovered in the oven at low temperature (200 or 250) until heated through. Serve with your favorite Italian meal and enjoy!

This dish actually turned out quite well. It’s not true risotto, of course, but it is a reasonable and tasty substitute.

Parmesan Roasted Turnips

My low-carb diet persists, and so does my search for new and different vegetables to substitute for all my favorite carbs. I wrote recently about my rediscovery of the rutabaga; it is quite impossible, really, to be reminded of the rutabaga without also being reminded of turnips… after all, fundamentally every description of a rutabaga compares it to a turnip.

Turnips are much easier to come by, and so when I struck out into the city in search of rutabagas, I naturally encountered turnips first. In fact, only two grocery stores I went to had rutabagas, but nearly all had turnips. I purchased turnips as a contingency for my Bolognese recipe, planning to spiralize them if a rutabaga could not be procured. But after finding the latter, I decided to try a different recipe with the turnips I had collected along the way.

Parmesan Roasted Turnips

Parmesan Roasted Turnips


2 large turnips (or 2 lbs. of small ones)
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
salt and pepper, to taste
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 475.

Peel and cut turnips into cubes or wedges. In a plastic freezer bag, combine turnips, nutmeg, salt and pepper. Seal bag and toss ingredients together.

Spread oil- and spice-coated turnips in a large, shallow casserole dish (should be large enough that turnips can be spread in a single layer). Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Roast for 10-15 minutes. Flip turnips so that they get roasted on the other side. Roast for another 10-15 minutes until golden brown. Serve and enjoy!

This recipe turned out well, tasty in a simple no-frills kind of way. I was actually surprised at just how potato-like the turnips were. It gives me many ideas for future recipes involving turnip substitutions for potatoes!

Beef Bolognese

Sometimes recipe searches lead to unexpected places. In my ongoing search for new ideas to fuel low-carb recipe substitutions, I encountered a recipe for Beef Bolognese with spiralized rutabaga noodles. This recipe rang two distant bells of memory for me.

First, I have certainly heard of Bolognese before, but it is one of those continental recipes that has, over the years, simply buzzed along the outskirts of my recipe radar. In general, I’m don’t actively search for new Italian recipes, simply because I have a pretty thorough existing repertoire in that cuisine category. Bolognese is essentially Italian meat sauce, which is perhaps as non-novel an Italian recipe as one could imagine. Having stumbled upon this particular recipe, however, I found myself intrigued by the spice mixture. In addition to the typical Italian green spices like parsley and oregano, it also included cinnamon and cloves. The addition of these more fragrant dark spices to more traditional Mediterranean tomato sauce is a combination I’ve enjoyed before in Greek Pastitso. Upon further investigation of Bolognese recipes, I found that some included nutmeg as well as other ingredients that intrigued me. Also, I found recipes for Bolognese both with ground beef and the stew beef, the latter variation a timely upgrade, as my dad had requested I incorporate a beef roast into our meal this past weekend.

Second, the use of spiralized rutabaga turned out to be something of a eureka moment. Many years ago, when I was in high school, I hunted down a rutabaga and some other atypical root vegetables to try out a particular recipe back when I was on a 90’s-style low-fat healthy eating kick. At the time, my tastes were not terribly well-evolved and I found myself slightly off-put but the difference in flavor between the rutabaga and a typical white potato. Without even tasting them anew, I immediately knew that my current adult palate would welcome these atypical root vegetables, such as rutabaga and turnips… especially when I discovered how relatively low they are in carbs. Rutabaga is only 9g/100g and turnips a measely 6g/100g. That’s even better than the 12g/100g in the butternut squash that forms the basis of my newly beloved squ-oodles! Both these vegetables have a similar consistency to butternut squash in that they are more substantial than the flimsier and more likely to spoil zucchini. They are also cheaper and easier to prepare for spiralizing than butternut. They can both be peeled simply like a potato and there are no seeds to carve out. Once my backyard supply of butternut squash runs out, I’ll need a more cost effective alternative to keep me through the winter, and both are worthy candidates.

As follows is my Beef Bolognese, a compilation of my favorite aspects of all the Bolognese recipes I evaluated online. I served it over spiralized rutabaga (rutab-oodles!), but it could certainly be served with any spiralized vegetable or with regular pasta.

Beef Bolognese with rutab-oodles!

Beef Bolognese with rutab-oodles!


2 tablespoons bacon fat
2 onions
3 cloves chopped garlic
2 stalks celery
1 (28 ounce) can chopped tomatoes
1 (6oz) can tomato paste
1 cup beef stock or one boullion cube
1 cup red wine
1 tbsp dried parsley
1 tbsp paprika
1 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
dash ground clove
dash ground nutmeg
2 lb beef, ground or cubed
2 bay leaves
salt and pepper, to taste

Heat bacon fat in a medium-large saucepan, or in the bottom of a crockpot. Add the chopped onion, garlic and celery. Saute until soft.

Add the tomatoes (discard liquid if using a crockpot) and tomato paste. Add the beef stock if using a saucepan, or a beef bouillon cube if using a crockpot. Add the wine and spices up to and including the nutmeg. Process with an immersion blender, if desired, to puree the vegetables into a smooth sauce.

Add the beef cubes after pureeing, and then the bay leaves, salt and pepper. Cover and simmer on low fire (in crockpot, low or high is fine, depending on how soon you want it to be ready; generally 4 hours on high or 8 hours on low) until beef is done. Ground beef simply should be cooked, cubed beef should be done enough to shred easily with a fork.

Serve over pasta or vegetables. Garnish with parmesan cheese.

Mornay Sauce for Seafood or Pasta

In my general browsing of recipes online, I found myself encountering the term “Mornay,” especially in seafood dishes, such as Crab Mornay or Salmon Mornay. Further research shows that it is — perhaps unsurprisingly — French in origin, a culinary outgrowth of Bechamel sauce, a basic white sauce (butter, flour, milk) that is a core element of French cooking, and that surfaces more widely in recipes of broader Continental origin.

Apparently Mornay is just Bechamel with cheese. The types of cheese used in recipes vary, but the one I seem most commonly is Swiss. I’ve seen it included in recipes to be poured over fish filets, seafood croquettes or crab cakes, even seafood crepes. It doesn’t seem to be used, traditionally, as a sauce for pasta, but its consistency as a cheesy sauce, it seems to me, invites the correlation that Swiss is to Mornay, as Parmesan is to Alfredo, as Cheddar is to Mac & Cheese, etc. Having tried it over pasta, I’m sold! My favorite way to make it, and preserve its longstanding connection to seafood, is to add faux crab and green onions:


2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon white flour
1/2 cup white wine (optional)
2 cups half & half or cream
8 oz Swiss cheese (Gruyere is most traditional)
2-3 green onions, snipped or sliced
8 oz to 1 lb. faux crab, chunk style, or other seafood
salt & pepper to taste
pasta or bread

Melt the butter in a medium saucepan. When it is just melted, add the flour and stir until all lumps are broken up. If you’re going to add some wine, make sure it is a light-bodied white so as not to compete with the subtle flavors of the swiss cheese. Heat the wine through and then add the cream and the cheese. I have gathered from looking at several recipes that Gruyere is the variety of Swiss cheese that is considered most traditional, but it can be pretty expensive. Any type of Swiss — or a combination of Swiss cheeses — will do. I use just plain ol’ low-brow brick o’ grocery store Swiss, but don’t rule out a Gruyere or an Emmenthaler or a Jarlsberg as a higher-brow option.

Heat the cream & cheese mixture on medium-low fire in order to soften the cheese. Meanwhile, snip the onions into a bowl and set aside. When the cheese is visibly melting, puree the sauce with an immersion blender to smooth out all the lumps. After the sauce is pureed, add your fish, if you’re using shellfish or faux crab. If you’re making this sauce to top a fish filet, crab cake or seafood croquette, then prepare the fish separately.

Once the sauce is thickened and heated through, add most of the snipped green onions (reserve some for garnish, if you like), salt and pepper. Serve tossed with pasta, over prepared fish and/or with crusty bread. Garnish with parsley.

To be honest, having read a lot of Crab Mornay recipes, I’m not sure what to make of their serving suggestions. Nobody but me seems to have had the idea to serve over pasta. Fair enough. I’ve done pasta but I have also used it (sans faux crab) as a sauce for salmon croquettes. Some of the recipes I’ve read involve serving it over seafood crepes, sometimes with mushrooms added to the crepes or the sauce. Again, seems logical. However, a majority of recipes suggest serving with “crusty bread” or in “a bread bowl.” Are people eating their Crab Mornay like a soup? Or, perhaps, making it thicker for use as a dip (I don’t add as much flour as some recipes because of carbs, but also so it will be pour-able enough to work as a pasta sauce)? I suppose it would be tasty as a fondue, though having larger fish chunks in a fondue seems cumbersome, unless they are also reserved and served on the side for dipping.

The mystery of Mornay will persist, but I’m advocating here and now that we add it to the canon of classic pasta sauces! This simple sauce is quite delicious; cheese lovers rejoice!

Gorgonzola Cream Sauce

This cream sauce may very well be the most delicious pasta sauce I’ve ever had in my life. Move over alfredo! If you like cheeses with a stronger flavor, this gorgonzola sauce will be right up your alley.

Sarah’s Gorgonzola Cream Sauce

gorgonzola2 tablespoons butter
1/4 teaspoon minced garlic
1/3 cup white wine (optional)
8 oz grumbled gorgonzola (or more to taste)
1 cup half n’ half or cream
ground pepper

Melt the butter in a medium/small saucepan. Add the garlic and saute briefly. This might seem like an exceedingly small amount of garlic, but with the gorgonzola cheese, it can very easily become overpowering and add an unpleasant and unintended saltiness to the flavor of the sauce. After a minute or so, add the white wine. Simmer another minute or so, then add the cream and gorgonzola crumbles. Season with pepper. Heat over low fire to melt the gorgonzola. I like to use my immersion blender to help the melting process along and produce a very smooth sauce, but you can also let the cheese melt only partially if you want a more textured sauce with a few gorgonzola lumps remaining. Serve over pasta al dente.

Eggplant Lasagna (i.e. Noodle-less Lasagna)

There are a lot of recipes for low-carb lasagna out there. Most of them involve doing something labor-intensive to slices of eggplant or zucchini. Sure, a breaded and fried eggplant parm can be a wonderful thing, but I’m just looking for a low-carb alternative to lasagna noodles. Armed with a new mandolin slicer, I decided to make a direct substitution of eggplant slices for noodles.

Building from my regular lasagna recipe, I endeavored to make a low carb alternative. Because I was also making meatballs to accompany this dish, I did not put meat in the lasagna. Adding meat to this dish would be as easy as browning a pound of ground meat and mixing it in with the sauce before layering. Also, I didn’t have ricotta on hand, so I substituted goat cheese.


1 tablespoon butter
1 small onion, chopped
1 teaspoon minced garlic
3-4 plum tomatoes, chopped
1 (6oz) can of tomato paste
6 oz of beer or red wine
salt and pepper, to taste
cayenne pepper, to taste
fresh basil and parsley, to taste
4 oz. goat cheese or ricotta cheese
1 egg
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup sour cream
one medium to large eggplant
1-2 cups shredded mozzerella or Italian cheese blend

Preheat oven to 300. Saute the onions and garlic in the melted butter in a medium saucepan until onions are softened. Add chopped tomatoes, paste, booze, salt, pepper. Cook until tomatoes break down. Add fresh herbs and cook until wilted in the sauce. Process with an immersion blender or in a food processor. Cook the sauce down so it’s thicker than an ordinary pasta sauce. A thicker sauce (i.e. less liquid) is necessary in this recipe to offset the liquid that the eggplant will release as it bakes.

If you want to add one pound ground meat, do so now. I recommend browning the meat first in a separate skillet before adding to the red sauce.

Meanwhile, combine the goat cheese (or ricotta), the egg, the parmesan and the sour cream in a separate bowl. If using goat cheese, a fork or whisk will help break up the cheese. Beat or whisk until as smooth as possible.

Quarter the eggplant lengthwise. Slice thin with a mandolin slicer. Spread a thin layer of sauce on the bottom of a 9×9 square pan. Put down the first layer of eggplant slices. Spread with a layer of cheese mixture and then another layer of sauce. Repeat layering: eggplant (I like to alternate each layer crosswise), cheese, sauce. Finish with a layer of eggplant and sauce.

Bake at 300 for one hour. Add shredded cheese and bake for another 45 minutes. The long and slow baking time helps to get rid of excess liquid without burning the contents of your casserole. If your oven runs hot, you may even want to try 250.

This recipe turned out quite tasty, indeed. The eggplant was soft, but sturdy, like a noodle, and the layers held together quite well. The goat cheese as ricotta substitute worked out quite well and makes me think I’d like to try it in a regular lasagna as well. This recipe also makes me curious to try other vegetables as noodle substitutes, perhaps zucchini or some kind of squash or sweet potato.


Until maybe a year ago, I didn’t know much about risotto. I remember as a kid and young adult, people on TV seemed to order it a lot in restaurant scenes, but then I hadn’t heard much about it until watching one of these chef competition shows where the contestants were challenged to make the perfect risotto–a task that is somewhat tricky, in large part because timing and temperature issues come into place. The rice must be cooked slowly and at a constant temperature, and so the broth used cooking it must be kept hot in a separate saucepan.

I did some online research and began experimentation. I don’t know if my risotto could stack up against the chefs on the competition show, but I’ve found that produces what is essentially a “rice alfredo” with the option for much customization; vegetables, mushrooms, fish & meat, and even nuts and lemon provide great options for dressing up the dish. I’ve found that risotto has become of my favorite dishes to cook, in large part because it is just fussy enough, requiring time and attention, but not so much that I can’t be working on other dishes at the same time.

Roasted Pepper RisottoSARAH’S RISOTTO

3 cups broth (chicken is standard, but I’ve made and used fish broth for salmon risotto)
1/4 cup butter
1 small onion chopped
1 or 2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup medium grain rice (arborio rice is traditional)
1 cup dry white wine
1/2 to 1 cup heavy cream or sour cream
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese
salt and pepper to taste
add-ins, such as spinach, roasted peppers, chicken, sun-dried tomatoes, salmon, almonds, pesto, wild mushrooms etc.

Heat the broth in a small saucepan and keep over constant low heat. Meanwhile melt the butter in a large non-stick frying pan. Saute the onion and garlic until softened.

Add the rice to the onions and garlic. Fry for about 3 to 5 minutes. Add wine and cook until wine is absorbed.

Add broth gradually to rice, keeping it hot in its saucepan in the meantime. You should aim for there to be a thin veil of broth over the rice at all times during cooking.

Once broth is used up, add the cream, cheese, seasonings and add-ins and heat through. Serve and enjoy!