Is Instagram the best thing ever, or is it totally ruining our lives? It’s the only social media platform I still follow, and I love looking at gorgeous images from around the world, but I worry about what it’s doing to us sometimes. We now have an expectation that everything from our food to our faces has to look absolutely spectacular. What started out as snaps of real life has evolved into highly edited and curated images portraying utter perfection. Yet I can’t look away.
I see the teenage girls in my school putting so much effort into piling on pounds of makeup with varying degrees of finesse. I see restaurants serving food that looks absolutely stunning but tastes like cardboard. I see the Instagram aesthetic washing over every part of our lives, homogenizing everything from apartments to cheeseburgers to female faces. It’s beautiful, yes, but is there something else we might not be seeing?
I saw a style blogger talking in her Instagram story recently about how she finally put on makeup and then she felt normal? That struck me as a little bit insane. We paint our faces, cover up our unique features to look more like everyone else, and that’s when we feel normal? Look, I’m sure I’ve said something similar many times. I wear makeup to work every day. But for once I stopped to wonder what would happen if we were all just satisfied with ourselves exactly the way we are. What if we didn’t need to enhance, find the perfect lighting, edit away our “flaws?” What if we were just good enough already and the rest was just for fun?
With that nonsense rant in mind, I’m sharing a dish that is truly delicious and pretty ugly. I have to confess that the first time I made it, I used orange cheddar instead of white, and the color was slightly more appealing, but the flavor was exactly the same. I thought about not sharing it because it wasn’t pretty enough, but then I realized that you would be missing out on something truly tasty. Not everything needs to be Instagram ready.
I assure you, this Cheddar Cheese Risotto will be a joy to eat. It will fill you up with its cheesy heartiness, and you’ll want to come back for more again and again. It’s not remotely difficult to make, but you do need to tend to it. Make sure you have all your ingredients measured out and waiting before you turn the stove on because once it starts cooking, you need to stay with it to the glorious end. But all you have to do is dump and stir. And stir and stir and stir until you achieve the creamy and chewy goodness that is risotto.
The face you woke up with is already beautiful. Your body is already a powerhouse. Your food does not need to look like a unicorn. There’s more to life than what shows up on Instagram. Be real. Eat real. Live real. It’s gonna be awesome.
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 green onions, thinly sliced
- 300 grams risotto rice
- 125 ml white wine
- 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
- 1 litre hot vegetable stock
- 125 grams sharp cheddar cheese
- In a large pot, heat the butter and oil over medium heat. Add the white parts of your green onions to the pot, and cook for a few minutes, stirring occasionally, until softened. Save the green part of the onions for later.
- Add the rice and give it a good stir to coat the grains in the fat. Add the wine and mustard, and stir until the liquid is absorbed.
- Start adding the vegetable stock a little at a time, stirring all the while until the liquid is absorbed before adding more. It will take about 18-20 minutes to work in all the stock. Taste it as you get toward the end until the rice is cooked through and chewy.
- Turn off the heat and stir in the cheese until melted.
- Serve right away, and sprinkle some of the green tops of your onions over the top of each dish.