I made a lot of risotto when we were first married. It’s inexpensive, it’s easy to keep all of the ingredients on hand, it doesn’t take too long to make, and it’s a fairly easy way to have a meatless meal. Mostly, I used Mark Bittman‘s recipe and added spinach. Then, for a while, risotto fell out of favor here, partly because my husband grew tired of it, and partly because it’s kind of hard to stir something for 30 minutes when trying to keep a toddler entertained. So, welcoming risotto back into our repertoire was like welcoming an old friend back into the kitchen. The recipe on pp. 86-88 of Barefoot Contessa Family Style is very similar to the recipe I’ve used for years, but it adds prosciutto or pancetta and roasted butternut squash. It was a delightful way to end a busy Sunday, and it didn’t even dirty that many dishes. Eating the leftovers for the next few days for lunch felt downright decadent. Note: saffron is expensive. If you know someone traveling to Spain or Israel, ask them to bring you some, because for some reason it is very affordable there. It’s a wonderful souvenir to bring home because it’s lightweight, and takes up so little space in luggage. My sister brought me back an ounce or so from her last trip to Spain, and it will last me a long time.