1. Risotto is one of those things I had resigned myself to only eating in restaurants. I was under the impression it was too complicated and time consuming for the average cook to make at home. When I saw it in this cookbook, I was overwhelmed and nervous but I thought to myself, “This is a new challenge and I should give it a shot. If It tastes terribly then I will never make it again.” Not even remotely the case.
2. Risotto, as it turns out, isn’t hard to make, it just takes patience and a lot of stirring. It is a fairly easy recipe to follow that will lead people to believe that you are more talented then you actually are! Sounds like the perfect recipe to me.
3. I love the rich, earthiness of this dish. From the various mushrooms, the broth and the thyme and rosemary it is extremely aromatic. The flavour is so deep and consuming, it just fills you with a warmth that spreads throughout your body. The mushrooms add a fleshy and meaty quality to the dish that replaces the need for actual meat.
4. This is the dish that caused GC’s grandmother, an 83 year old Italian woman to exclaim, “Fuck, where did you learn to cook like this?” If that’s not a good enough reason for you to try it, I won’t be able to find a reason for you.
Recipe is below the cut and happy munching!
- 1 stick of celery
- 1 large onion
- 15g dried porcini mushrooms
- 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
- 1 chicken or vegie stock cube
- 300g of arborio rice
- ½ glass of white wine
- 500g of mixed fresh mushrooms
- fresh thyme
- 1 clove of garlic
- 40g Parmesan cheese
- A large knob of butter
- ½ a lemon
- A handful of parsley
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Place the onion, celery and dried porcini in food processor and pulse until finely chopped.
- Drizzle some olive oil into a saucepan and add the mixture. Stir while it cooks.
- Finely chop the rosemary leaves and add to the pan with the rice.
- Stir 1 minute and add the wine and stock cube. Stir until the wine has been absorbed.
- Season and add a mug of boiling water. Stir until it has been absorbed.
- Add more water and stir until absorbed and continue for about 20 minutes.
- Rinse the mushrooms and tear up half into the risotto and the other half into a frying pan with some olive oil. Season. Crush over the garlic. Pick some of the leaves from the thyme into the pan. Stir and remove from the heat.
- Add more thyme leaves to the risotto.
- Stir the butter into the risotto. Grate some of the Parmesan over the top.
- Add a squeeze of lemon. Check the seasoning.
- Chop the parsley and sprinkle ½ over the risotto and ½ over the mushrooms.
- Serve the risotto with some of the mushrooms over the top. Grate over some more Parmesan.
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 20 minutes
Number of servings (yield): 4