A Mushroom Risotto with Love from Paris
This mushroom risotto recipe arrived in my inbox all the way from Paris. Michelin Star Chef Yves Mattagne of Seagrill in Brussels is in collaboration with Longines Masters, serving his fine cuisine at the dining tables of the world class horse show. Today is the opening day for the Longines equestrian event in Paris, where my Parisian friends are seated in the dining area overlooking the course. I can just taste the beurre et fromage in the risotto aux champignon des bois from here in Los Angeles. Chef Mattagne's exquisite dishes are still in my sensory memory. It was a pleasure to attend the Longines horse show in Los Angeles recently, so making this recipe allows me to celebrate the event in Paris from afar.
And how I long to be there... so in my kitchen I made this creamy mushroom risotto and shared a glass of wine with my friends in Paris!
This risotto is adapted from Chef Yves Mattagne's recipe which uses freshly picked morels. I've replaced the morels with small shiitake, cremini, bunshimeiji, and dried porcini, as I could not obtain morels. If you are able to make this with fresh morels, you are in for a delicious treat. The morels melt in your mouth when simply enhanced by good butter, white wine and the earthy broth for the risotto. Also, you may use vegan butter if you'd like a vegan risotto, just omit the Parmesan or find a gourmet vegan cheese to pair with it.
2 cups arborio rice
5-6 cups mushroom broth, as needed
1/2 white onion, sliced fine
2 leeks, sliced fine, whites only
1/2 cup white wine, pinot grigio or sauvignon blanc
2-4 tbl unsalted butter, more as needed
2 tbl olive oil, more as needed
1/2 cup grated parmesan
1/4 cup dried porcini, pulsed fine, rehydrated in hot broth
1/2 cup cremini mushrooms, sliced fine
1/2 cup shiitake mushrooms, sliced fine
bunshimeiji mushrooms, tips only
few sprigs of thyme, stripped
1 small bunch of basil, chopped fine
black pepper, to taste
sea salt, to taste
Bring broth to a simmer in a saucepan. Make sure stock is kept simmering on the stove.
Rehydrate the dried porcini in hot broth. *You can pulse the dried porcini in a coffee grinder or food processor first to make the dried porcini more of an essence, then add to the broth. This will lend a wonderfully intense mushroom flavor to the mushroom broth as you cook the risotto.
Heat olive oil and a pat or two of butter in a wide non-stick saucepan over medium heat. Add onions and leeks and cook gently until tender, 3 to 5 minutes.
Turn up heat slightly and add all of the mushrooms, stirring into the onions and leeks. Continue to stir occasionally until the onions and leeks begin to turn translucent, about 3 to 5 minutes, then splash in a small amount of white wine and add in some thyme. Allow the onions, leeks and mushrooms to cook, stirring, until fragrant, about two minutes.
Season mushrooms with thyme, sea salt and black pepper, and a little bit of butter. Continue to cook over medium heat until tender. Taste with a spoon and adjust, but remember the parmesan will add a saltiness to the risotto, so take care not to over salt. *I used a black truffle finishing salt.
Add the rice to the pan and stir until grains begin to crackle and turn golden. Add a splash of white wine and cook, stirring, until wine has evaporated. Stir in a ladleful of simmering stock to just cover the rice. The stock will bubble slowly.
Cook, stirring often until stock is almost absorbed. Add another ladleful or two of stock and continue cooking at a medium-slow pace, stirring often and adding more stock when rice is almost dry, for 15 minutes.
Continue to add stock and stir for another 10 minutes. Rice should be tender all the way through but with an al dente tack. Taste and adjust seasoning or add more broth if undercooked. Awareness of the balance between al dente and overcooked needs to be heeded--- when the rice is just about cooked, it is perfect.
Add another ladleful or two of stock to rice if needed. Stir in Parmesan and remove from heat.
Season with fresh black pepper, basil, thyme, and slivers of shaved Parmesan on top.
Serve warm in wide soup bowls. Bon appetit!