Mushroom (and chicken) risotto

This mushroom and chicken risotto is a family favourite that my parents hadn’t cooked in years due to the rarity and price of fresh mushrooms in Tonga. Dried mushrooms are relatively easy to get, but we hadn’t used them before so we were a bit cautious. I decided to give them a go and after a bit of experimentation discovered the best way to use them. So now we can make this risotto again. When I make this recipe for mum and myself we don’t add chicken, but my dad insists on meat with his meals so I usually add some chicken.

(Just a quick aside about the pictures. They are from a batch I did recently with no chicken and brown rice instead of white rice. While it does work with brown rice it takes 2 or 3 times as long so be warned)

Grab your food processor. Our food processor is a bit old so I dice the dried mushrooms before I put them in, but if you have a strong food processor don’t bother. Add the diced dried mushrooms, the onion, and the celery (if you can find some) to the food processor and blitz them together until everything is finely chopped.IMGP1246

Make up about 1L of chicken stock. Scrape the finely chopped veggie mixture into a large saucepan with some olive oil and cook until soft stirring regularly. When the veggies start to soften add the diced chicken and a little more olive oil. Cook the chicken until it stops looking pink then add the rice, thyme, garlic, rosemary, and salt and pepper. Stir for a minute or so until everything is thoroughly mixed together.

Add about ¾ – 1 cup of white wine and 1 tsp of chicken stock (or one stock cube crumbled up). Stir the mixture until the wine is absorbed into the rice. Add about a cup of the stock into the pot and stir to mix it through.IMGP1249

If you’ve got other things to do you can go away and come back every few minute to add more liquid. I tend to wash up and play games on my phone. When the stock has been absorbed add about ½ a cup of the whey and stir until it is all absorbed, then add another cup of stock stir it in and wait until it’s absorbed. I find making risotto can also be a good chance for reflection if you’re in a reflective mood. You can stare into the depths of the pan and monitor the risotto while you think about your week. Every time the liquid is absorbed by the rice, or the mixture sticks to the bottom when you stir it add some more liquid, alternating between whey and stock until both are gone.

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When the risotto is the consistency of porridge add the butter, parsley and parmesan cheese and stir them through the risotto. Then serve.

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Ingredients

  • 300g of chicken breast
  • 20g of dried mushrooms (Our food processor is a bit old so I dice the dried mushrooms before I put them in, but if you have a strong food processor don’t bother)
  • 1 large white onion
  • 1 stick of celery (if you can find some)
  • 2 sprigs of fresh rosemary or 1 tsp of dried rosemary
  • 300g of risotto rice (Arborio, or long grain rice)
  • 1 tsp of chicken stock (or one stock cube crumbled)
  • 1 small bunch of fresh thyme or 1 tsp of dried thyme
  • 1 tsp of garlic
  • a large knob of butter
  • 2 tbsp of parmesan cheese
  • 1 heaped tbsp. of chopped fresh parsley

Method

  1. Grab your food processor. Add the diced dried mushrooms, the onion, and the celery to the food processor and blitz them together until everything is finely chopped.
  2. Make up about 1L of chicken stock.
  3. Scrape the veggie mixture into a large saucepan with some olive oil and cook until soft stirring regularly.
  4. When the veggies start to soften add the diced chicken and a little more olive oil. Cook the chicken until it stops looking pink then add the rice, thyme, garlic, rosemary, and salt and pepper. Stir for a minute or so until everything is thoroughly mixed together.
  5. Add about ¾ – 1 cup of white wine and 1 tsp of chicken stock (or one stock cube crumbled up). Stir the mixture until the wine is absorbed into the rice.
  6. Add about a cup of the stock into the pot and stir to mix it through. If you’ve got other things to do you can go away and come back every few minute to add more liquid. I tend to wash up and play games on my phone.
  7. When the stock has been absorbed add about ½ a cup of the whey and stir until it is all absorbed, then add another cup of stock stir it in and wait until it’s absorbed.
  8. Every time the liquid is absorbed by the rice, or the mixture sticks to the bottom when you stir it add some more liquid, alternating between whey and stock until both are gone.
  9. When the risotto is the consistency of porridge add the butter, parsley and parmesan cheese and stir them through the risotto.

 

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