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Risotto is one of those dishes that we love to eat, but neither my husband and I never tried to make it until now. We always said that it would be one of those dishes that we would make when we are forced to stay at home due to a rainy day or one cold winter’s day. Lasagne is also another meal that we would like to make from scratch when we will have no plans one weekend. We have been saying that for about seven years now since we got married. We accomplished one of them a few weekends back.  Anyways, getting back to my risotto story, so that stormy rainy Sunday afternoon, we decided to stay at home and try our hands at making mushroom risotto from scratch (together). Risotto is one of those dishes that takes some time and attention to make as it takes about 25 minutes of careful stirring, and every few minutes adding a half cup of hot stock to the rice, as the rice slowly absorbs the liquid it’s in.
For the mushroom risotto, we used Champignon Mushrooms. We used fresh mushrooms for this risotto but you can also use dried ones (if you’re using dried mushrooms just put them in warm water for about half an hour or so). If you use fresh ones, simply clean them with a damp cloth (never with water) and thinly slice them and set them aside.
We used Arborio rice, since we are living close to the region where Arborio rice comes from, is cooked slowly with stock and when done, you stir in some freshly grated Parmesan cheese. (Hungry yet?) I actually don’t mind watching over risotto, it’s easy enough to do, and you can prepare other things while keeping the corner of your eye on the risotto. The result is so worth the effort.
You will need at least 5 cups of stock to make this much risotto, but the exact amount will vary depending on how hot your stove is, how much you stir the rice and how wide your pot is. Your best bet is to heat up a full 7 cups of stock, so you don’t run out. You can use any leftover stock to loosen up the risotto if you need to keep it on the stove before serving.

Risotto is best served immediately.

Ingredients:

 2 Tbsp butter
– 2 cups of any flavorful mushrooms such as shiitake, chanterelle, or oyster mushrooms, cleaned, trimmed, and thinly slice (as I stated we used Champignon Mushrooms for this recipe).
– 2/3 cup dry white wine
– 5-7 cups chicken stock (you can use vegetable stock for vegetarian)
– 1/3 cup white onion (finely chopped)
– 1 3/4 cups Arborio rice (or any other risotto rice of your choice)
– 1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
– Salt and freshly ground black pepper (to taste)
– 2 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley (optional)
Preparation:
1. Bring stock to a simmer in a pan.
2. In another deep, heavy, medium sized pan melt butter over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms and onion and sauté for about 5 minutes (if using chanterelles, dry sauté first for a minute or two and let the mushrooms cook in their own juices before adding the butter).
3. Pour the sauté mushrooms in a dish and set aside. Leaving a little of the liquid from the mushrooms in the pan.
4. Add rice to the same pan where you sauté the mushrooms and start to toast it and stirring frequently for about two minutes or so.
5. Add dry white wine, bring to a boil, and reduce liquid by half for about 3-4 minutes.
6. Add simmering stock, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring enough to keep the rice from sticking to the edges of the pan. Stir the rice almost constantly — stirring sloughs off the starch from the rice, making a creamy sauce you’re looking for in a risotto. Wait until the stock is almost completely absorbed before adding the next 1/2 cup. This process will take about 25 minutes. The rice should be just cooked and slightly chewy.
7. Stir in the Parmesan cheese and season to taste with salt and pepper.  Also, adding the sauté mushrooms and mix well.
8. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley (we didn’t add parsley to ours as my daughter doesn’t like green herbs in her food, so we omitted this out for her…she has a thing for not wanting green herbs in her meals.)  🙂

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