If you are looking for simple, hearty, gluten free dish, try to make this risotto. The nicest thing about risottos is, that you can put in anything you like, as long as you stick to few main ingredients such as Arborio rice, good quality stock and parmesan cheese.
I decided to experiment with dried wild mushrooms my father hand picked in the forrest last autumn. Mushroom picking is one his hobbies which are very popular in my native Czech Republic. You simply go to the forest after rain anytime from August till October looking for wild mushrooms. The trick obviously is, that you need to know what to pick, as you can easily poison yourself and your whole family. I totally trust my father, so I don’t question the glass jar packed with sun dried mushrooms my mum regularly prepares for me when going back to Dubai. They are precious ingredient in many of my dishes as they are delicious, always remind me of home and they are something I cannot buy in supermarket.
Here is the recipe for my wild mushroom risotto. I don’t expect you to go looking for the specific mushroom type, any mushroom will do. Just remember, the wild mushrooms will bring your dish to a totally different level. Instead of dry mushrooms you can use about 200 g of fresh mushrooms.
When I made this dish two days ago, we were fighting for the leftover for our lunch yesterday. A pretty obvious sign, that it was damn good! I can’t wait to experiment with different flavours like saffron, cinnamon and raisins or perhaps beetroot or mashed sweet peas!
What you will need:
- Handful of dried mushrooms, soaked in water for at least 2 hours
- 250 g arborio (risotto) rice
- 1 medium onion, peeled and finely chopped
- 2 celery stalks, chopped
- 2 tbsn olive oil
- 30 g parmesan cheese, grated
- 1/4 almonds, chopped
For the stock:
- ready made organic stock OR make your own one from following ingredients:
- 1 litre of water
- 1 small onion, cut into 8 pieces
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled
- 2 stems of rosemary
- 1/4 of soaked and in small pieces cut mushrooms
First of all bring your stock to the boil (or just water) and add all the stock ingredients in. Keep simmering on a low heat.
In the meantime, in a medium pot fry onion with olive oil for about 3 minutes, add chopped celery and chopped soaked mushrooms and sauté for 3 more minutes.
Add all rice and fry on medium heat for 3 more minutes.
Now you can start adding stock using large ladle (you will need at least 3 large ladles to start with). Start cooking rice while stirring constantly and adding more stock when needed (absorption method). Remember, the mixture will slowly start absorbing all stock and must never look too dry. You are aiming for porridge like consistency.
Continue the process for about 15-20 minutes until rice is cooked al dente. Now add chopped almonds and parmesan cheese to achieve creamy consistency.
Season with pepper and Himalayan salt if needed.
And before you start, remember that leftover stock (if any) will make delicious soup the next day! Just add some root vegetables and noodles and your healthy effortless lunch is ready!