Mushroom Risotto

I (obviously) love to cook, but it’s not always an effortless experience. Believe me, I have my fair share of culinary mishaps.

My hands and arms are covered with kitchen-related scars due to cutsburns, and all-around klutziness. Sometimes tastebuds take the brunt of my goof-ups. (Just ask my sisters… I once made dinner for them that tasted like eating a lawn.)

And sometimes it’s my pride. (To me, the most devastating part about this failed batch of macarons was thinking about how pretty they could have been in those springy colors. Sigh.)

But despite all my mishaps, I always try to learn something from my mistakes. Last weekend, for example, I learned that making risotto with brown rice takes longer than with white.

A lot longer.

My poor dinner guests waited patiently as I stood by the stove for two and a half hours, sweating over a dish that was only supposed to take 30 minutes. Uffda. Thankfully the final product was absolutely delicious! And so I present this recipe with the caveat that I trust Mark Bittman and believe that his original instructions are correct. Just follow his advice and use white rice, or parboil your brown rice beforehand.

Trust me. I’m an “expert.”

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Mushroom Risotto

  • 1/2 cup dried porcini mushrooms
  • 4 Tbs. unsalted butter
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups Arborio or other short-grain rice
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 4-5 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • salt and pepper

Rinse the dried mushrooms, then place them in a small bowl and cover them with hot water. While the mushrooms are soaking, melt 2 Tbs. butter over medium heat in a large saucepan. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, about 3-5 minutes.

Add the rice and cook, stirring occasionally, until coated with butter and glossy. Add the white wine and a bit of salt and pepper. Stir and let the liquid bubble away. Drain the porcini and chop them, then stir them into the rice, along with half of their soaking liquid.

Begin adding the stock to the rice, about 1/2 cup at a time, stirring after each addition. When the stock is just about evaporated (but not dry), add more. Stir frequently, keeping the heat at medium to medium-high. Meanwhile, melt the remaining 2 Tbs. of butter in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the fresh mushrooms and sauté until lightly browned, about 8-10 minutes. Remove from heat.

Begin tasting the rice about 20 minutes after first adding the stock. It should be tender but still slightly chewy (like al dente pasta). When the rice reaches this stage, stir in the cooked mushrooms and parmesan cheese. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.

Serves 6.

Source: Slightly adapted from ”How to Cook Everything“ by Mark Bittman.

Nutrition info (per serving): 200 calories, 10.8 g fat (7.1 sat), 17 g carbs, 6.4 g protein, 0.6 g fiber.

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One thought on “Mushroom Risotto

  1. Pingback: Oles and Cannolis | Lingonberry Jam

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