Wild Mushroom Risotto is a signature item at The Grove Artisan Kitchen. The mere mention of this dish to those who are familiar invariably draws positive exclamations! In support of September’s Destination Dish ingredient, “mushroom,” I've shared my recipe.
The oncoming change of season is a great time to try out the abundant variety of mushrooms available. There are thousands of mushroom types in all kinds of colors, shapes and textures. Mushrooms are cultivated (grown under controlled conditions) or wild (foraged in forests). This recipe calls for wild mushrooms because they have more distinctive flavors than cultivated ones and retain more of their flavor when cooked. You can experiment with various types including morel, shaggy mane, chanterelles, black trumpet and horn of plenty.
Tips for purchasing: select fresh mushrooms that are firm and evenly colored with caps that are free of blemishes. Avoid any that are slimy or have soft dark spots. Mushrooms with closed caps are freshest when the caps are closed. If you choose open-cap mushrooms, the exposed gills should be unbroken.
Tips for storing: mushrooms quickly become slimy and moldy when sealed in plastic. Remove them from plastic and refrigerate, unwashed, in a paper bag. The paper absorbs excess moisture and allows the mushrooms to breathe.
• Extra-virgin olive oil
• 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
• 2 pounds assorted fresh mushrooms, such as shiitake, portabella, oyster, Pocini, cleaned and sliced
• Kosher salt
• 1 medium or 2 small onions, cut into 1/4-inch dice (about 1 1/2 cups)
• 2 cups Arborio rice
• 2 cups dry white wine
• 6 to 7 cups hot chicken stock
• 2 tablespoons butter
• 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano
• 1/2 cup chopped chives or parsley
Coat a large saute pan generously with olive oil and add the smashed garlic cloves. Bring to a medium-high heat. When the garlic cloves have begun to brown and are very aromatic remove and discard them. Add the assorted fresh mushrooms to the pan and season with salt. Saute the mushrooms until they are soft and pliable. Turn off the heat and reserve.
Coat a large saucepot abundantly with olive oil. Add the onions and season generously with salt. Bring the pot to a medium-high heat. Cook the onions, stirring frequently until they are very soft and aromatic but have no color. Add the rice and stir to coat with the olive oil. Cook the rice for 2 to 3 minutes to toast, stirring frequently. Add wine to cover the surface of the rice and stir frequently until it has completely absorbed. Add the reserved mushroom water and then add chicken stock until the liquid has covered the surface of the rice. Stir frequently until the stock has absorbed into the rice. Repeat this process 2 more times. Check for seasoning, you probably will need to add salt.
During the third addition of stock, add the reserved sautéed mushrooms. When the stock has absorbed into the rice and the rice is cooked but still "al dente", remove the pot from the heat. Add the butter and cheese and whip until well combined. This will set the perfect consistency of the rice. The rice should flow and not be able to hold its shape and look very creamy. Serve immediately garnished with chives or parsley.