Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Mushroom Risotto

Houston witnessed a miracle today...it snowed!!  It only lasted a few minutes & (of course) it didn't stick, but it did fall from the sky, so we'll count it.  They even shut down all of the local schools and businesses.  These are the days that having a home office isn't as exciting.  I still had to work all day while most people enjoyed a "free" day.

On cold days like these, I crave something warm to eat. Mushroom Risotto fits the bill.  Risotto takes a while to make, but it's a labor of love.  Once you take your first bite, you'll realize it's worth all the time you stood at the stove, stirring...and stirring...and stirring. 

Mushroom Risotto

  • 3 Tbsp. butter, divided 
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 lb. mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups Arborio rice
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 5-6 cups chicken stock
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves removed from stem & chopped
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, shaved or shredded
  • kosher salt & pepper


1.  Pour chicken stock into a 2 qt. saucepan and warm over low heat.  (Don't boil it, just keep it warm).

2.  In a large, heavy pot, heat 2 Tbsp. butter over medium heat.  Add mushrooms and saute until tender, about 5 minutes.  Transfer to a bowl and set aside.

3.  Add 1 Tbsp. butter & 1 Tbsp. olive oil the the pot.  Saute onion & garlic for 3-4 minutes.  Stir in the rice and cook for 2-3 minutes.

4.  Pour in white wine and bring to a simmer, stirring constantly. 

5.  Once the wine has been completely absorbed, add 1/2 cup of chicken stock.  Simmer, while stirring, until the liquid has been mostly absorbed.  Repeat with remaining chicken stock, adding 1/2 cup at a time, letting each addition absorb before you add the next 1/2 cup.  Stir frequently.  Depending on your rice, you'll use 5-6 cups of chicken stock.  When you're getting close to the end of your chicken stock, taste the rice for doneness.  It should be creamy & soft, but not mushy. 

6.  When you add the last 1/2 cup of stock, stir in the mushrooms, thyme & parmesan cheese.

7.  Season with salt & pepper.  (You'll want to taste it again at this point.  If you use reduced sodium chicken stock, you'll probably need to add a generous amount of salt.  Start with 1/2 tsp. and go from there).

8.  To serve, top with additional parmesan cheese.

My Tid-Bits:

* You can use whatever type of mushrooms you'd like.  I would normally use an assortment of wild mushrooms, but the wild mushrooms at my grocery store looked sad.  I went with baby bellas instead. 

*  Step 5 will take a good 25-30 minutes.  Be patient and enjoy a glass of wine while you stir. 

* I served this risotto with grilled steaks & roasted green beans.

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