Sunday, 11 December 2011

Wild Mushroom Risotto

If you can get hold of fresh wild mushrooms from somewhere, like Borough Market, during autumn and early winter then definitely make the most of it. Otherwise, a lot of shops sell them dried in little tubs or packets, which can be reconstituted in water prior to cooking.

All risottos start with the same basic essentials, or at least mine do: a diced onion and a couple of diced celery stalks, sauteed in butter and oil until soft. 

Add 300g of risotto rice and stir it through, letting it get hot. From experience, it is worth forking out for the pricey arborio stuff, it cooks in half the time of the other, cheaper, short grain varieties I tried using. Slosh in a glass (or teacup) full of white wine and stir through the rice mixture until it's all been absorbed.

Keep 750ml of hot vegetable stock in a saucepan on the heat and pour the first ladleful into the rice. Keep the rice on a medium heat, at least enough to keep it at a low sizzle. Stir, stir, stir and stir again. Keep stirring. Even if your arm is about to drop off, keep gently stirring the rice.

Eventually the stock will be absorbed and you'll need to add another ladle of stock and do it all over again. I mean, don't beat it up or anything, but do keep stirring and adding stock and stirring.

After adding all the stock, the rice should be near cooked. At this stage I turn the heat down very low (or even off), put a lid on the pan and get on with the exciting part.

Pick over and clean your mushrooms, in this case we had a good few handfuls each of chanterelles, trompettes, girolles and ceps. Heat up a frying pan with a little oil and butter, with some crushed garlic. Saute the large mushrooms first, adding in the smaller ones after the chunky ones have had a bit of a start.

When the mushrooms are ready mix them into the hot rice mixture with tons of grated parmesan and chopped parsley

If you can get hold of one (and I'm soooo lucky, my husband bought me one as a present!), grate in a lovely load of black truffle - also known as winter truffle. 

Finish with some butter and freshly cracked pepper and some truffle shavings.

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