When autumn arrives I start using my well worn, cracked, blue, Le Creuset Dutch oven almost every night. Soups, vegetable stews and risotto are wonderful choices for colder evenings and so easy when the pot is brought straight to the table. I have been making this mushroom risotto recipe for decades, but only recently started roasting the wild mushrooms to add at the end as a garnish.
Roasting brings out the deep woodsy flavor of the mushrooms, and when I sprinkle them with olive oil, fresh thyme, rosemary and sage it is quite beautiful. I have never been brave enough to forage for my own mushrooms and am quite happy buying the “variety pack” at my local Whole Foods. I use crimini (also known as Baby Bella) mushrooms for the base in the risotto along with a yellow onion.
Start by cooking the chopped onion with olive oil, salt and pepper until it is translucent. Add the sliced crimini mushrooms and turn up the heat a little bit to evaporate off some of the moisture they release while cooking:
I then pour into the pan about a half cup of white wine and crank up the heat to reduce. After the wine has reduced and the mushrooms and onions start to brown slightly I add one cup of Carnaroli rice along with a handful of chopped fresh thyme, rosemary and sage.
Then slowly add – cupful by cupful – turkey broth that has been warmed either in a Pyrex cup measure in the microwave or in a pan on the stove. I use turkey broth this time of year, and specifically for this recipe, because it has such a rich flavor. I either make my own by simmering the carcass of the Thanksgiving turkey for hours or buy the Trader Joe’s brand – which is a seasonal product – so STOCK UP! After about 15 minutes of stirring and adding broth until it reduces and stirring and adding broth until it reduces and stirring…you get the picture…I start testing the rice for doneness. I prefer my risotto less on the “al dente” side and more on the cooked fully-through side. Be your own judge.
Finally, I stir in about a 1/2 cup of heavy cream and a handful of freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano until well incorporated. I like to use a ramekin or cup measure to plate the risotto. I then arrange the roasted wild mushrooms, some fresh chopped herbs and a grating of cheese.
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