One show that I can’t get enough of is Master Chef. The reason I like it is because it features contestants from all walks of life and unlike previous seasons this one is all amateur chefs. It’s nice to see professional chefs and sous chefs compete but it’s also great to see people like me who just have a passion for food and don’t work in a kitchen. I could never be on the show because I would crumble under pressure.
In about the third episode, where the contestants were actually able to compete against each other they made a dish called Risotto. The dish seemed to be a pretty big challenge for some people who served it either undercooked or with ingredients that didn’t make any sense. Some people nailed it, but the majority really had no clue. J then said he’s heard that risotto is a hard dish and asked me if I have ever made it. Embarrassingly the answer is no. I have always shied away from risotto because I too have heard how hard it was. At that moment I decided I needed to make Risotto and probably make every other “challenge” dish that they’re forced to make on the show.Here I have made you a mushroom and leek risotto.
- 1 large leek, cleaned and sliced
- 5 3/4 cup chicken stock, divided, keep 5 cups simmering on stove
- 1 cup chopped mushrooms of your choice. I used shiitake and crimini
- 2 shallots finely chopped
- 2-3 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 small onion or half a large onion, chopped
- 3/4 cups arborio rice
- 1/3 cup dry white wine (warmed to room temperature
- 1/3 cup fresh grated parmesan
- 1 teaspoon truffle oil
- small bunch chopped Italian parsley
Bring leeks to boil in heavy medium saucepan. Reduce heat to medium and simmer until leeks are tender Stirring often, about 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside
Preheat oven to 400°F. Toss Mushrooms, shallots and olive oil together and sprinkle with salt and pepper. On a baking sheet, roast until mushrooms are tender and light brown around edges, stirring occasionally, about 45 minutes. Set aside
Simmer about 5 cups of stock on stove. Have it ready for your rice. Melt 2 tablespoons butter in heavy large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and cook until beginning to soften, about 5 minutes. Add rice; stir 1-2 minute. Add wine and stir until almost all liquid is absorbed, about 2 minute. Add 1 cup hot broth (I used a large ladle). Stirring often, simmer until broth is almost absorbed, about 4 minutes. Add more broth, 1 cup at a time, allowing each addition to be absorbed before adding next and stirring often, until rice is tender and mixture is creamy, This will take approx 20 minutes longer. Stir in leek mixture, mushroom mixture, Taste to make sure rice is cooked. If not, add another cup of hot broth and reduce again. Rice should be done at this point. Ass remaining 2 tablespoons butter, cheese, and truffle. Transfer to large bowl, sprinkle with parsley, and serve.
Guess what? I too nailed it! So pleased with myself. Granted, I wasn’t on a time limit or cooking for Gordon Ramsey but after tasting it, id gladly invite him over for a taste.
I think if you follow the basic technique of making risotto you can’t screw up that bad. The hardest part is knowing when to stop adding stock and when it’s done. 20 minutes seems to be a pretty good estimate of time, but to be sure you ‘ll need to taste it as you go. I guess where people go wrong is under cooking or overcooking. When deciding, look for a creamy, not mushy, consistency. I served mine in a big bowl, but traditionally it’s served on a flat dish. It should easily spread out but not have excessive liquid. I would also advise using the proper type of rice. It’s a bit more expensive but worth it.
This recipe is so delicious! J and I both had seconds which rarely happens. It was earthy, savory but also a fresh tasting as well. I would definitely make this again and can’t wait to try other risotto recipes. YUM!