Mushroom Risotto

I was recently made aware of #mancrushmonday. I’m in the process of creating a Top 10 list to share with my sister and yes; Gary Oldman, Mark Strong and Mads Mikkelsen if you’re reading this – you will make the cut. And speaking of hash tags, I made up my own one for the boys yesterday in the wake of a Horrible Histories overload. It’s called #noTVintheafternoonmonday. It was not a hit.

But while we’re on the topic of popularity and hash tags,  this post falls in line with the #meatfreemonday. Except it’s not Monday. But it would have been if I’d have written this yesterday. Meat Free Monday is sort of like a movement that encourages people to less meat. You can read about it on the website, it’s endorsed by loads of celebrities and statistics but in the end it’s just another way to help British people eat their five a day. Did you know that in Australia it’s 7-a-day, in Denmark it’s 6-a-day and in the States it’s 9-a-day? Zoe Harcombe has written an interesting article on this campaign in her blog, Diet, Obesity, Nutrition & Big Business.  Zoe questions the status quo in terms of food and policy development, drawing connections and pointing out conflict of interests, her agenda is combating obesity.

If you’re looking for something hearty, tasty and filling, then a mushroom risotto ticks all the boxes. Don’t be fooled into thinking you need dairy to make a creamy risotto.  With the exception of a little bit of butter and Parmesan, risottos do not need cream or sour cream or anything like that. Risottos are made creamy by the starch in the rice and the cooking technique. The grains that contain the most starch are arborio, vialone nano and carnaroli and the important details of the technique is the sautéing of the rice before adding liquid, and the gradual adding of liquid.

Mixed Mushroom Risotto Recipe

Lots of mushrooms, all kinds (the weirder ones usually have the best flavour)
1-2 cups of arborio rice (depending on how many mushrooms you have and how many people you’re feeding)
1/2 cup White wine (vermouth or sherry will do)
1 L Chicken stock
1 Mushroom stock cube (or porcini’s steeped in boiling water)
1 onion
3 garlic cloves
Handful of chopped parsley
Parmesan cheese.

Saute the chopped up mushrooms in some butter, put aside.
In a large pot, saute onion and garlic in some butter and olive oil.
Add the rice and stir for a minute or two.
Pour in the wine and cook off till evaporated.
Throw the mushrooms back in.
Add the stock in small batches, letting it evaporate each time until the rice is cooked to your liking.
When cooked, stir through the parsley, cheese and season with lots of black pepper.
Make sure there is a little liquid left in the rice, you want it moist but not wet.