Mushroom Sage Risotto

I LOVE a good risotto! Creamy and rich with the perfect bite to the rice. I don’t make it often because it requires undevided attention and I’m kind of all over the place! If I see it on the menu at a restaurant, it’s almost always a consideration… But, make no mistake, I will send that shit back in a hot minute if it’s undercooked or mushy. Seriously, I’m no chef. I’m just some broad who likes to shake things up here and there, but even I know the rules! Add the liquid hot and in small incriments and allow each small addition to be completely absorbed before adding more. If you break these rules you will end up with undercooked rice instead of the creaminess that is a characteristic of a good risotto.

Heating the broth and keeping it hot while cooking, will keep the risotto at a regular temperature instead of cooling it off with each addition of liquid, this alone will cut your cook time down signifigantly. Further, allowing the liquid to absorb slowly gives the rice a chance to release it’s starches. They, coupled with the broth and wine cook down together to give you the desired creaminess. The first time I tried risotto was when I was a kid and I thought that it was rice in a sauce, learning what it really is, was exciting! It’s not IN a sauce, the rice IS the sauce. Science! Also, the fact that it’s a blank canvass is a plus. A beautiful spring risotto primavera is great with asparagus, peas and shallots. Chicken breast pieces and roasted red peppers is just as lovely! Today, we are making my favorite, rich and creamy, stick to your ribs, cool weather, mushroom risotto.

You will need the following:

  • 1 pound fresh mushrooms, chopped and/or sliced. I used a mixture of black trumpet, chantarelle and crimini mushrooms. You can use what you like or what’s available. Just make sure they are fresh. Canned or dried would not be ideal for this application.
  • 6 cups vegetable broth
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine. Use something decent that you would drink. NEVER cook with wine that you wouldn’t pour a glass of.
  • 1 1/2 cups arborio or other short grain white rice
  • 3 cloves roasted garlic. You can easily roast some garlic and keep it around. Slice the top off of a head of garlic, drizzle with olive oil and wrap in foil. Roast in a 350 degree oven for about 40 minutes or until soft. If that’s more trouble than you care to go through, use one clove of garlic, minced. The risotto will still be delicious.
  • 1 Tbsp fresh sage, finely chopped. You may sub for 1 tsp dried sage if you don’t have fresh on hand.

Directions:

  1. Heat the broth in a sauce pan to a simmer over medium heat. Once it starts to bubble, turn the heat to medium low for the duration of the cook time.
  2. Add the mushrooms to a dry pan and toss over high heat until they begin to release their liquid. Once they have reduced in size and have released their liquid, just a few minutes, turn the heat down to medium and continute to cook until the liquid is cooked off, just a few minutes more. Remove to a bowl and set aside.
  3. Add a couple Tbsp olive oil and the garlic to the pan over medium heat sautee for a minute or so. Toss in the rice taking care to coat it well with the olive oil. Sautee for about two minutes.
  4. Next, add the wine and stir until it is absorbed.
  5. Begin adding the hot broth 3/4 cup at a time taking care to always let it absorb before adding more. Stir frequently. Continue this step unil about a cup and a half of the liquid remains.
  6. Now it’s time for you to add the fresh sage and return the mushrooms to the pan. Salt to taste. Continue to cook until remaining liquid is absorbed. By now, the rice should be tender but not mushy. Serve imediately.

This is such a lovely fall meal. It’s vegan and could be a wonderful side dish but is hearty enough to serve as a main course. Give it a shot. Shake things up a bit! Swearing Mom out.

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Beautiful black trumpet mushrooms! 

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Chewy and mild, chanterelles are a great mushroom for this!

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You can’t go wrong with these beautiful crimini’s.

The grocery had a great display of fresh mushrooms. So, I bought some of these beauties to make this lovely risotto. Don’t worry if these aren’t available, though! Crimini or buttons will do just fine!

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The rice will look soupy, but the heated broth will absorb quickly.

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You’re nearly there!

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Now it’s time to add more liquid!

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The rice is begining to get plump and creamy… we’re getting there!

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Add the sage…

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And voila! A gorgeous vegan dinner!

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