March has been one hectic month, filled with birthday celebrations, house guests, SXSW mayhem and don’t forget spring break including a fun, yet exhausting, trip to Legoland –– creating a little March Madness of our own. All of these happenings and adventures have caused us to eat out a LOT this month. This dining out included several sweet treat stops along the way and I think at one point we had ice cream 5 days in a row – gasp!
Don’t get me wrong there are those days when I just don’t want to cook (or really do the dishes) so eating out is the real treat and of course it’s fun just to go and try new spots and gather some inspiration from them. When we landed back into town, I was thinking about things that I considered to be special treats back in the day –– you know dishes that I would go out of my way for. One of those memorable tidbits was not a sweet one, but a savory one, that I came across in Chicago many years ago. They were cheesy risotto cakes from Whole Foods Market and they weren’t cheap at $3.50 for a 2″ cake especially for this 20-something-at-the-time girl. I had to walk a long way just to get there in addition to blowing most of my dinner budget on them but they were worth it because I earned them. Once in a rare while you can find these cakes at Whole Foods Market, but I prefer to make these at home for the whole family to enjoy and keep them pocketbook-friendly. One could use risotto for this recipe, however, to save some time, I used a quick-cook brown rice to make Spring Herbs & Cheddar Cheese Brown Rice Cakes. Slightly crispy on the outside, warm and cheesy on the inside –– nutty brown rice swirling with melted cheddar cheese, spring onions, parsley, and cilantro can be served as a savory dinner entree “treat” or over a salad for a hearty vegetarian lunch. Go ahead –– you’ve earned them.