Thursday, September 20, 2012

Best Risotto Ever

Fall is creeping upon us, and what does that mean? It means many things in this household.  For example: football games in the crisp air, lots of yummy smelling candles in the house, baked goods (because I can't resist), movie nights with our cups of tea, etc.  Most of all, I look forward to cooking delicious savory meals. Hello acorn squash, homemade soup, roasted chickens, stew...just thinking about these foods makes me thrilled to share with you a new recipe I found. I made modifications to fit what I had on hand. I'm telling you, make this tonight or tomorrow, it is SO DARN GOOD.

Mushroom orzo prepared risotto style.

2 tablespoons EVOO (Extra Virgin Olive Oil)
1 sweet onion
2 cups of orzo
salt & pepper to taste
1/2 cup of white wine (make sure it's something you would drink)
4 to 5 cups of chicken stock or vegetable stock (I made my own)
2 tablespoons of butter
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2 cups of sliced mushrooms
2 garlic cloves
1. Put butter in a deep nonstick skillet, heat on medium, toss in diced onion and minced garlic.  Saute until they are translucent. 
 2. Add in the orzo and cook, stir occasionally and make sure they get completely coated in butter and glossy. Make sure to add some salt and pepper (to taste).  After 3 minutes or so, add in the the half cup of white wine. Stir continuously and let the liquid bubble away.
3. After the wine has bubbled away add in the broth. Add it 1/2 cup at a time, continuously stirring, as to not let the orzo get soupy nor dry.  Each time more liquid evaporates, add another 1/2 cup. Keep the head at medium-medium high, depending on your stove top. Stir frequently. I cannot stress that enough, you do NOT want your orzo sticking to the bottom of the pan. 
4. Intermittently add in your fresh mushrooms. They will cook down with the continuous stirring. 
5. After 10-15 minutes check your orzo, taste it and see how much it has cooked.  It should be tender but not mushy. It could take as long as 20 minutes for it to cook all the way. Once it does reach the desired stage, you may add in a bit more butter if you like, and at this point add in 1/2 cup of Parmesan.  Taste again and adjust the seasonings if needed.  I added more pepper and garlic powder.

I served mine with torn basil and cherry tomatoes on top for a bit of extra flavor. The best part about this recipe is that you can top it with many things, and it's a great side dish to multiple entrees!


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