Tuesday Night Vego Challenge – Mushroom Risotto

Normally a risotto wouldn’t quite meet the time requirements (not that I’m strict on that) for the Tuesday night vego challenge, but this one comes from Jamie Oliver’s 30 minute meals, so I think on this occasion it well and truly qualifies.  I was also looking for something nice to make with the fabulous mushrooms I bought at the slow food market.  They were all Swiss browns, so even though the recipe called for mixed mushrooms – which would probably be even better – I just used these and some dried mushrooms I had in the pantry.  To make sure it was actually vegetarian I used vegetable stock and some of the water used to soak the dried mushroom instead of the chicken stock.  A warning though, this is a lot of mushrooms, so if you don’t love them like we do, this might not be for you.

1 onion
1 stick celery
2 sprigs rosemary
15g dried porcini mushrooms (though I used shitake)
300g risotto rice
1/2 glass white wine
1 vegetable or chicken stock cube (I used stock from the freezer)
500 mixed mushrooms (chesnut, oyster, shitake, Swiss brown etc)
1 clove garlic
small bunch of thyme
large knob of butter
40g Parmesan cheese
1/2 lemon
handful of flat leaf parsley

Add the onion (halved and peeled), celery and dried mushrooms (which I had soaked in a little water for about 15-30 minutes first) to a food processor and pulse until finely chopped.  Drizzle a little olive oil into a saucepan and scrape in the vegetable mixture, stir regularly.

Pick and finely chop the rosemary leaves, add to the saucepan with the rice.  Stir well for 1 minute, pour in the white wine and crumble in the stock cube if using it.  Stir until the wine has been absorbed.  Season, then add either a cup of boiling water or a cup of hot stock and stir well.  Continue adding a little more water or stock when the last lot has been absorbed, stirring frequently, until the rice is tender and cooked through – probably about a litre of liquid will be added over about twenty minutes.

Rinse the mushrooms if they look like they need it (or just brush them clean) and tear half of them into the risotto mixture.  Put the other half into a hot frying pan with a couple of lugs of olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper.  Crush in one clove of garlic, pick the leaves from some thyme and add them to the pan.  Stir them and then remove from the heat.  Add more thyme leaves to the risotto.  Put the frying pan of mushrooms under a hot grill to crisp up and turn golden.

When the risotto is porriage-like, add the butter, grated Parmesan cheese and a squeeze of lemon juice.  Season to taste.  Sprinkle both the risotto and grilled mushrooms with chopped parsley.

Divide the risotto between your bowls, top with the grilled mushrooms and serve with a spinach salad.

Tuesday Night Vego Challenge is hosted by The Witches Kitches.

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