Risotto for those who might not know it is a type of an Italian dish made out of rice and cooked in a stock until it reaches a creamy consistency. The rice used in such dish are the following variants Arborio, Baldo, Carnaroli, Padano, Roma, and Vialone Nano. Amongst them the most common one is the Arborio but the best ones are Vialone Nano and Carnaroli they are expensive as well which costs around NZ$16 per kilogram. Now you wonder why only this type of rice can be used. It’s because those rice have a high starch quality and good in absorbing liquid (which means tastier dishes)
Now for this dish we will be making a simple Mushroom Risotto which you can serve as a starter served before the main course. A simple rice meal which is good paired with light acidic meats like fish and chicken to balance out the flavours. Now if you haven’t tried one before and wondering what should be the consistency of this dish, well the perfect risotto would be creamy in consistency, the texture should be al dente and they grains should be separated from each other. It cannot be runny or cooked like steamed rice. And if you are still unsure on how it looks like then refer to my image above.
1 3/4 cups Arborio rice
4 tbsp butter
1 1/2 cups dried shiitake
1/2 cups dried porcini
3 cups water
1 cup white wine
4 cups vegetable stock
1 tbsp olive oil
1 large white onion, finely chopped
freshly shaved Parmesan cheese
freshly ground black pepper
- Soak the dried mushroom in 3 cups water until mushroom is soft. Drain the mushrooms and keep soaking water.
- Finely chop the porcini mushrooms and slice the shiitake mushrooms. Set aside. Place mushrooms on a muslin cloth then wring to remove excess water.
- Now in a pan add 2 tbsp butter and olive oil and pan fry the mushrooms, and then set aside.
- Using the same pan add the remaining butter then sauté onions once colour turns translucent add the mushrooms. Pan fry for 1 more minute.
- Now add rice and wine, stir until liquid is absorbed.
- Mix the stock and soaking water together. Now add the broth mixture a ladle at a time adding again only if liquid is absorbed by rice, repeat the cycle until liquid is finished or rice is cooked (al dente)
- Season with salt and pepper the top with freshly shaved parmesan cheese.