It’s C-C-Cold – Time for Comfort Food and Astrophotography

Well it is winter, what do you expect? In reality it’s not always possible to get away road tripping as often as we want right? So in the meantime and especially in winter, there are things to do in preparation for future trips.

If the days are just too wet, cold, windy and miserable to spend much time outdoors, it can be time to try out a few more recipes that are quick and easy to prepare in the caravan. This one is a definite for my caravan recipe book. A foolproof (and don’t waste your time standing around stirring) risotto.

I love risotto but have never had the patience to add stock little by little, wait for it to absorb before adding more etc… so I was thrilled to find this recipe, originally from Linda McCartney, which I’ve modified a bit. It’s especially good for caravanning with not many ingredients and quick and easy to make.

Being a Linda McCartney recipe it was totally vegetarian but I’ve used chicken stock and add white wine (of course) and it’s pretty much a throw together, set the timer and wait for it to call you, dinner!

The ingredients and steps are as follows:

Melt 2 Tablespoons of butter in a deep frying pan and cook 1 small chopped onion until softened. Add 1 cup of chopped mushrooms and cook until softened and browning.  Add a splash of white wine and cook off the alcohol. (Here is where you pour yourself one too!)

Add 1 cup of Arborio rice to the pan and stir to coat with the liquid for around 5 minutes, until it starts to go clear. Add 2 cups of boiling stock (vegetable or chicken), season with salt and pepper, bring to a simmer, stirring all the while.

Reduce heat, cover the pan with a lid and leave to cook for 15 to 20 minutes, until the liquid is absorbed. When absorbed sprinkle with ¼ cup of shredded parmesan cheese and 1 cup of chopped parsley and stir through.

That’s it! Serve it up and have another glass of white. Don’t let anyone tell you risotto is hard. This one is easy and delicious.

Ok the nights are freezing at the moment too, but that can be a blessing if it means clear night skies. Here is your chance to have a go at, or try to perfect your night or astrophotography.  I am by no means an expert at this but I am having a go and getting the hang of it, becoming more confident with persistence.  I have a Canon 750D digital SLR camera and tripod and pretty much play with the settings until I get something I’m happy with.  I do have a remote timer so that I can get even longer manual exposures but I haven’t played with it yet. For now I’ve been able to get some good results with my camera by adjusting the ISO and usually using a 30 second exposure.

I’m sure there will still be plenty of nights to come for more experimenting. Keep an eye on my Instagram account where I post regularly.

And, on the bright side we have just marked the passing of the winter solstice here in the southern hemisphere, so bring on the longer days!

Stay warm

Glenys

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