Saturday, December 31, 2011

Chanterelle mushroom risotto

Today is the 31st of December and another eventful year is ending. One of the best things I did this year was to start my blog and have enjoyed every minute of it. I hope everyone reading this post has enjoyed making the recipes as much as I have enjoyed creating and posting them.

This is my last post for the year and marks the end of holiday meals as well. Risotto is a very comforting dish but rich as well. This one is made with wild chanterelle mushrooms. They have a very distinctive shape in the mushroom world — they look like tiny trumpets. Their taste is earthy and delicate and the texture is very silky. Because of their delicate flavor, they are best combined with mild flavors that won't overwhelm the beauty of these gorgeous mushrooms. In their raw from, they are a little spongy - and since they are wild, have a lot of dirt on them, compared to farmed mushrooms. It is best to use a medium-bristle brush to remove the dirt - washing in water will completely water log them and ruin their taste.

Lots of butter (kidding- some butter) and some parmesan cheese enhances the silky texture of the mushrooms and makes for a very creamy risotto. I use Porcini mushroom stock to deepen the mushroom flavor in the rice, but if you don't have it in your neighborhood, you can substitute with 2 cups of vegetable stock.

Chanterelle mushroom risotto

6 oz chanterelle mushrooms, cleaned and coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon finely minced garlic
1 ½ tablespoon unsalted butter
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper

  1. Heat a heavy bottomed skillet with butter over medium high heat. As the butter melts, add the minced garlic and cook for 30 seconds to a minute till they are translucent. Add the chopped mushrooms and saute for about 8 minutes till the liquid released by the mushroom dries up and the mushrooms have taken on a golden brown color and silky texture.
  2. Set aside till they are ready to be added to the risotto.
For the risotto
1 cup arborio rice
1 cube Porcini mushroom stock [In the U.S. they are available from Italian grocery stores]
1 tablespoon finely minced garlic
½ medium sized shallot, finely minced
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Extra Parmesan cheese for the table
White Truffle oil (optional)

1. Heat a medium sized heavy bottomed saucepan with 1 tablespoon unsalted butter and extra virgin olive oil. Add the minced shallots and the minced garlic and cook till they are translucent. (It is important to ensure that they are not brown since they will change the color of the risotto).
2. Add the rice and sauté with the shallot and garlic mixture till the grains of rice are well coated with the butter mixture and the rice is opaque.
3. If you are using the stock cube, dissolve it in 2 cups of hot water and keep the stock simmering on another burner. If you are using vegetable stock, keep it simmering as well.
4. Add about ½ cup of simmering stock in the beginning and stir until most of the liquid is absorbed. Continue adding ¼ to ½ cup of stock at a time and repeat the process until the mixture is creamy and a bit loose. The rice should not become mushy and should have a slight bite to it. This process takes about 20 to 25 minutes. If the stock is over during the process, and the rice has not reached the right doneness or consistency, add warm water.
5. Now add the ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese and fold it in into the rice. Finally add the sautéed mushrooms and mix in with cheese and rice mixture. Serve in bowls with an extra grating of Parmesan on top. If you want you could make it extra special and finish with a few drops of truffle oil.

Serves 3.

1 comment:

  1. Chanterelle mushrooms melt in your mouth like butter