Risotto is an Italian dish made from short-grain rice such as Arborio or Carnaroli. It should be cooked until the rice is al dente – retaining some bite. The addition of the cold butter and parmesan at the end transform the dish, binding all the ingredients together to make a creamy, oozing texture.
- 50g dried porcini mushrooms
- 1 stock cube
- 250g chestnut mushrooms
- 1 shallot, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 300g risotto rice
- 200ml dry white wine
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp fresh thyme
- 25g butter, chilled and cubed
- 50g parmesan, grated
- salt and black pepper
Pour 1 litre of boiling water over the dried mushrooms and leave to soak for 20 minutes. Remove the mushrooms and crumble the stock cube into the liquid. Chop the mushrooms.
Heat the oil in a large saucepan or wok and fry the onions and garlic until softened. Add the mushrooms and thyme, season, and cook for a further 10 mins.
Add the rice to the pan and toss for a minute or two until all the grains are coated in oil and vaguely translucent. Turn up the heat and add the wine, stirring well to allow the alcohol to boil off without the rice sticking.
Turn the heat down and pour a quarter of the stock over the risotto. Stir frequently until the liquid has all been absorbed. Repeat the process 3 more times until all the liquid has been used and the rice is cooked. Taste regularly – if more or less liquid is needed, adjust the quantities as necessary.
Remove the pan from the heat and add the cold butter and half the parmesan. Stir well into the rice then cover the pan and leave for 2-3mins. Serve and eat immediately, with the rest of the parmesan sprinkled over the top.