You must try this. Whether you are vegetarian, vegan or a meat eater like me that is trying to reduce red meat then you are going to be impressed by this recipe. Super tasty and that is down to the quality of the stock used in this risotto. Don’t be tempted to cut corners by using a stock cube. Make the stock the day before and keep in the fridge if you want to reduce prep and cooking time.
To make the stock:
In a roomy pan with a lid heat the oil then add the chopped onion and allow to fry gently for about 5 minutes until softened and translucent. Add the sliced mushrooms, garlic and thyme – give a stir then add a lid and leave to sweat for about 10 minutes over a low heat. Remove the lid then add the wine, salt, pepper, mace, mushroom ketchup and the steeping water from the dried mushrooms. Reserve the porcini to fry later.
Bring the pan to the boil then cover and simmer gently for 20 minutes.
After the cooking time strain the stock into a pan and allow to cool if making in advance or alternatively keep warm if using straight away.
To make the risotto:
In a large roomy frying pan heat the oil then add the chopped onion and stir then leave to cook over a low heat for 5-10 minutes until the onion is softening but not coloured. Add then the garlic, give a quick stir then add in the rice stirring well. The heat needs to be low and the cooking of the risotto will take 25-30 minutes. Have the stock in a pan heated and just below simmering point alongside your pan of risotto.
Add first the wine along with the salt and pepper, stir well and then add 2 small ladles of hot stock. Stir around regularly and little by little the rice will absorb the liquid. When you see there is little liquid left in the pan add another two small ladles, stirring well between each addition. Continue in this way, don’t rush the process, keep the risotto over a low heat and the stock hot and after 25-30 minutes the rice will be soft and delicious.
Have another frying pan at the ready and once the rice has been cooking about 15 minutes heat the 20ml oil to hot and fry the sliced chestnut mushrooms and the rehydrated porcini until well browned.
Test your risotto rice to make sure it is cooked through then stir in 1-2 tbsp fresh chopped herbs and about three quarters of the fried mushrooms, reserving a few as a garnish.. Stir through 1 tbsp double cream and check the seasoning, adding more salt and pepper if required.
Serve on warm plates topped off with a few fried mushrooms, parmesan shavings and a scattering of chopped fresh herbs.
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