Featured Recipes

Risotto with Porcini Mushrooms

from Festa del Giardino

YIELD: 6 servings

Porcini mushrooms have a very pungent, woodsy flavor. For a more delicate version, 8 ounces of cultivated mushrooms (sliced thinly) may be used instead of the porcinis. They should be sauted briefly (3 minutes) in 3 tablespoons of butter or extra-virgin olive oil and added in Step 5 in place of porcinis.


5 to 6 cups of Vegetable Broth

4 tablespoons of unsalted butter

1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped

2 cups of arborio rice

1 cup of dry white wine

1 ounce of dried porcini mushrooms, soaked in 1 cup of lukewarm water for 10 to 15 minutes

1/8 teaspoon of saffron, powdered or threads (optional) salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

2/3 cup of freshly grated Parmesan cheese


1. Heat the broth in a three-quart saucepan to a simmer.

2. Saut the onion in the butter in a large, heavy saucepan or  dutch oven until soft and translucent (about 3 minutes). Add the rice and stir until coated. Stir in the wine and cook until it evaporates (about 3 minutes).

3. Dissolve the saffron in 1 cup of the broth and set aside.

4. Add 1/2 cup of broth and stir; repeat the process for about 10 minutes.

5. Drain the porcini, reserving the soaking liquid. Strain the liquid through two layers of cheese cloth to remove grit. Chop the porcini coarsely, and add to the rice along with the strained soaking liquid.

6. Stir in the saffron mixture, salt and pepper.

7. Continue adding broth and stirring after each addition for another 10 minutes or so, until the rice is al dente.

8. When the rice is evenly colored by the saffron, stir in the Parmesan cheese.

Transfer to a warm serving bowl and serve immediately.


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