Monday, June 11, 2012

JP's Mushroom Risotto

Ok, so first off I need to admit this is not one of my recipes.  I've altered it a little bit but it's my Uncle Jean-Pierre's concoction, and we refer to him as "JP".  My Aunt Maggie and Uncle JP live out in Sacramento and are literally my only family in California.  JP used to be a professional chef, is Tunisian, and cooks with a passion that leaves your mouth open.  A dinner party at their house is truly an experience as there are at least 10 courses and wine the entire way.  JP has taught me a lot about cooking and every time I visit I learn something new.  Some of my good friends have been able to experience Maggie & JP's and there's currently a list of others that beg me to take them there!  So, with that said this is one of JP's dishes (he doesn't use recipes) so I'll try to relay the best I can!

Servings: No idea, but I think around 8-10 good portions
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes (give or take)

1 Bottle of your favorite white or red to drink while cooking, #1 JP requirement
3/4 Bottle of dry white wine, portioned out (2 buck chuck from Trader Joe's, don't get all fancy)
4 Handfuls of risotto arborio rice, literally put your hand in the bag and pull out 4 handfuls
2 Tablespoons, olive oil
3/4 Carton mushrooms, roughly chopped (I used baby bella)
1 Shallot, finely chopped
1 32oz. box chicken stock, portioned out
1/2 Jar of saffron (you can get it at Trader Joe's)
Salt & Pepper to taste
Parmesan, grated to put on top

Start off with a heavy bottom skillet on medium high heat.  Put the arborio rice in the dry skillet and toast for a couple of minutes.  In the meantime, start another smaller skillet on a different burner on medium heat.  Add olive oil, and sauté mushrooms and shallots until soft.  About 5-7 minutes.

After toasting rice for a couple of minutes, lower heat to medium.  Add 1/4 of the bottle of wine and 1/4 of the chicken stock to the rice.  Let simmer.  Season with saffron, salt, and pepper.  Taste as you go along, you'll be able to tell if you want more salt or pepper.

Ok, so this is the tricky part.  Risotto takes time, and it sucks up a LOT of liquid.  Overall, it should take about 30 minutes in total to cook.  You have to constantly stir it, and add liquid once the rice absorbs it.  There's no "measurement" for this.  Just keep adding equal parts wine and stock (about a 2 second pour each time) and it will work itself out.  I promise!  You'll know the rice is done when it's tender and and have almost doubled in size, just keep trying it as you go.

Once the rice is done, add the sautéed mushrooms and shallots.  Top with grated parmesan and voila!!  You can serve immediately but it also can be put in the freezer for up to 3 months.  Apologies if this is vague for some of you, so message me if you need help!