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Monday 6 May 2013

Wild mushroom risotto recipe - easy peasy, just a few ingredients and stiring and you have out of this world risotto side dish, or just eat it by the bowl!

Somedays, I just really crave comfort food.  One of my favs is risotto.  Its simple, all you need is rice, broth, cheese, maybe some herbs, wine and either a vegetable or seafood and you got a meal.   Oh, and a bit of love and time. Here’s my recipe for my fav – wild mushroom risotto.  You can just make with whatever mushrooms you have on hand, but adding in a handful of dried mushrooms to the broth really put this risotto over the top.  Any any risotto is always worth the time in making… and savoring!
Basic risotto is just rice cooked slowly with additions of broth and lots of stirring so the starch from the rice makes a lovely creamy texture.  Not to mention intense flavor from absorbing and concentrating the broth and any other vege/meat/seafood additions!  Now, I ran out of Arborio rice – a special type favored by Italians as it has a higher starch content than other rice.  More starch = more creaminess!  You can cheat and add in cream, but to many, that’s risotto sacrilege, so I made mine with *gasp* jasmine rice lol!  It surprisingly turned out ok, with lots of flavor, but definitely decreased in the normal creaminess I expect when using the proper Arborio rice.  Next time I’ll head to the grocery store, but its nice to know, regular long grained rice works ok too… just don’t ever do this with instant rice!! 

Risotto is super versatile, you can use any mushrooms you have - from the grocery store or farmer's market or from a certified mycological guru - wild mushrooms are delicious but only if you don't posion yourself in the process.  If you wanna pick your own, look up your local mycological club as they usually have classes and experts that make sure you don't pick something deadly.  Use a non-stick deep pan (I use this one) to make your life easier so if you forget to stir stir stir, its no biggie.

Here's some pictures of wild mushroom risotto I made a few weeks later.. with the proper rice:
And you can clearly see its waaay creamier!

(Wild) mushroom risotto Makes 6 servings if used as a side dish or 4 entree sized servings
-8-10 cups chicken broth, divided
-2 Tbsp olive oil, divided
-3-4 cloves of garlic, minced, divided
-2 pound mushrooms, thinly sliced – portabellos, button, white, brown shitake, whatever you have on hand
-1 medium sweet onion diced
-2 shallots, diced (can sub 1Tbsp red onion)
-1 ½ cups Arborio rice
-½ cup dry white wine (sub out with more broth if you're planning to make this gluten free)
-salt to taste
-black pepper to taste
-3 tablespoons finely chopped herbs: chives, basil, green onions for garnish
-4 tablespoons butter
-1/3 cup freshly grated cheese - Parmesan or romano or again, whatever you have on hand
-½ cup dried mushrooms (assorted, wild).. gives it a wicked kick up in flavor *optional*

How to:
1. In medium saucepan or pot, heat the broth to a boil, then turn down to a simmer over low heat. Optional – add in dried mushrooms directly into broth.  They will rehydrate, flavor broth and soak up lots of flavor as it simmers for next 20-30min as you make the risotto. You can add them to the risotto at the end with the rest of the sautéed mushrooms.

2.  While the broth heats up, in a large non-stick frying pan/skillet, heat 1 Tbsp olive oil and 2Tbsp of butter on medium –high and add in half the garlic, all the mushrooms and diced onions, and cook until mushrooms soft and onions transluscent and just starting to caramelize, ~3-4 minutes. Dump cooked mushrooms-onion misture into large bowl and set aside

3. Turn stove down to medium heat and toast shallots and remaining garlic with 1 tablespoon olive oil and oil and 2Tbsp of butter in large fryingpan/skillet, for 30-60s (don’t burn!). Add in rice and stir to mix well and cook till the rice is lightly golden brown. Dont' worry, its not burnt! 

4. Pour in wine all at once – stir like crazy until the wine disappears. Add ½-1cup cup broth to the rice, and stir until the broth is absorbed. Continue adding broth ½-1cup  cup at a time, stir stir stirring, until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is al dente, about 15 to 20 minutes, or if you like it creamier 20-30min.

5. Remove from heat, and stir in mushrooms-onions mixture, super simmered wild mushrooms left in the bottom of the broth pot if you used them, herbs, and parmesan. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Stuff face! :D

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