Thursday, December 6, 2012

Wild Rice Risotto

I needed to go a little bit out on a limb for Thanksgiving.  As you can judge from previous posts, nothing I attempted was too terribly out of the ordinary.  I wanted to add a little more wow factor into the meal.  And nothing seems to impress others quite as much as risotto.

To tie the dish into the harvest meal a little more, I opted for a wild rice version.  Wild rice is huge in this region of the Midwest, and no doubt a staple of the native people and early fur traders and colonists.  The risotto itself is made from arborio rice, with the addition of a bit of wild rice for flavor and texture.  The wild rice adds a wonderfully nutty contrast an extra crunch to the creamy rice.

Of this dish, there were no leftovers...

adapted from Heidi's recipe at the Young Grasshopper

serves 4-6

The Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups water
1/2 cup wild rice

1 cup arborio rice

6 cups chicken broth divided  
1 Tbsp olive oil 

2-3 cloves garlic, minced

1 medium sized onion, chopped

2 cups chopped mushrooms

1 cup Chardonnay

1/2 cup grated Parmesano Romano
Kosher salt

The Process:
In a medium-sized saucepan bring the wild rice and water to a boil.  Reduce heat, cover and let simmer for 40-45 minutes.  Drain and set aside.

Warm the chicken broth in a saucepan over low heat.  Keep warm.
In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat.  Add the onions and garlic and saute over medium high heat until the onions are tender and translucent, about 5 minutes.  Add the rice and stir to coat evenly.

Slowly pour in the white wine and add the mushrooms.  Bring the liquid to a gentle simmer, stirring continuously.  Once the wine has been absorbed, add the warm chicken stock, one ladle full at a time, allowing each addition to be fully absorbed before adding the next.  Patience is key.  Stir gently and continuously.

Once about half of the stack has been absorbed, add about one third of the wild rice.  Continue to add the stock, alternating with rice, allowing the broth to be completely absorbed between each addition. 

After the last ladle of stock has been absorbed, and the rice is creamy in texture and slightly al dente, stir in the Parmesano Romano.  Remove the risotto from the heat. Season with salt to taste. Cover and let rest for 3-5 minutes before serving. 

Serve warm with a sprinkling of your favorite herbs.


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