Making a flavourful Risotto is a nice addition to any meal or even as a main course. The only problem is making sure the Arborio rice (in between a rice & tiny pasta) is neither too chewy or too soft at the finish.
Even though I’m not Italian (although I have family members and friends who are) I can tell you how to make a really good one.
Here’s what you need to serve 6 as an Appetizer or 4 as a Main:
Arborio Rice – 1 cup
Dried shitake or porcini mushrooms (1/2 oz, about 1 cup), rinsed then soaked in boiling water for about 30 minutes. Remove mushrooms, squeezing excess water but reserve some liquid for pot. Coarsely chop mushrooms and set aside.
1 onion, thinly sliced.
3 cups of chicken stock. You can keep it warm over another stovetop element until ready to add, little by little.
2 Tbsp. butter
2 large shallots, peeled and finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
½ cup of dry white wine
½ lb. fresh wild mushrooms (chanterelles, morels, shitake, porcini or combo of all) washed and sliced.
4 fresh sage leaves, coarsely chopped (optional)
½ cup parmesan cheese, grated
salt & ground black pepper, to taste
2 oz. fresh truffles or white truffle oil for finish
Chopped flat-leaf parsley or chives for over top
Melt butter over medium heat. Add shallots, garlic, onion and sage. Cook until onions and shallots are transparent, about 5 minutes. Add rice, and cook stirring constantly, until lightly toasted (not burned) and well-coated with butter, about 5 minutes.
Add *wine and stir until absorbed into rice. Stir in all the mushrooms (ones that were previously dried & fresh), reserved cooking liquid (about 1/2 cup) and ½ cup of the warm chicken stock. *You can absorb yourself with some wine too while cooking – I highly recommend it.
Cook over simmering heat, stirring frequently until ALMOST all liquid has evaporated. Remember not to let it dry out completely. Continue adding stock, about ¾ (175 ml) of a cup at a time, stirring frequently, until rice is tender but firm to the bite and mixture is creamy but not soupy, about 20 minutes.
Remove from heat and stir in ½ Tbsp. of butter and the parmesan cheese. Season with kosher salt and black pepper. Garnish with flat-leaf parsley or chives for presentation. Then shave fresh truffles onto risotto upon serving. I used white truffle oil instead & it was amazing. Buon Appetito as they say in Italy.