I’ve been on quite a risotto kick lately. Apparently I’m determined to use up the entire bag of Arborio rice that’s been sitting in the pantry before the big move in a couple of weeks. The thing I love about risottos is they’re easy -time consuming, yes- but easy… and a great way to wow the hubs-to-be after a long day of apartment hunting. We settled onto the couch in our pjs with a glass of wine and a big bowl of risotto in our laps and shamelessly watched two episodes of Downton Abbey the other night. It was wonderful.
Oh and as if I needed another excuse to shop at Whole Foods, I’m obsessed with their new brown paper produce bags. Maybe they’re not new and it’s just a California thing… Regardless, paper totes are much more romantic than those terrible plastic bags that are nearly impossible to open and aren’t compost-friendly.
As far as risottos go, this one’s definitely on the healthier side with all of the spinach, mushrooms, shallots and not one pat of butter. Have I mentioned to you that Parm, my favorite cheese in the world, is also high in calcium? I love, love, love these flavors together, especially the fresh, earthy spinach that’s added right at the end.
Serves ~4 entrees (~6 as an appetizer)
- 1 1/2 cups Arborio rice
- 6-7 cups chicken broth (use vegetable broth for vegetarian version)
- 12 ounces crimini mushrooms, cleaned & quartered
- 8 ounces fresh, baby spinach
- 3 large shallots, finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup Parmesan Reggiano cheese, divided
- salt & pepper
In a medium saucepan, bring chicken broth to a simmer. Cover and keep warm over low heat.
In a large heavy saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the shallots and saute until tender, about 5 minutes. Add the mushrooms and again, sauté until they also start to get tender, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add the rice and stir to coat. Now, add 1/2 cup of simmering broth and stir until almost completely absorbed, about 2 minutes. Continue cooking the rice and adding the broth 1/2 cup at a time, stirring almost constantly to allow each ladle of broth to absorb before adding the next. Do this until the rice is tender and creamy but not mushy, about 30 minutes total. Remove from the heat. Stir in spinach and 3/4 cup of the Parmesan. Allow the spinach to wilt completely and transfer the risotto to a serving bowl. Sprinkle with the remaining Parmesan and serve immediately.
Have any favorite ingredient combos for a future risotto dish? I’m still working my way through that bag of Arborio.
Mushroom always seems like the ideal choice for risotto, and this is no exception :) Love that you added in the spinach at the end too!
I’m making this tomorrow night :)
Mmm, I love risotto!
Don’t eat it that often though, because it’s quite high on carbs and I like it so much I eat more that what I consider a normal portion…
love the pic of the bag of spinach!
recipe looks tasty, mmm.
First, your recipe looks delicious AND fairly healthy for a risotto. I am also a lover of risotto and make about 100 different varieties each winter :) Second, I hope my Whole Foods starts carrying those paper bags!! I’m afraid that it might just be a California thing!
This looks divine! We buy mushroom risotto from TJ’s every week but I’ve never made it homemade – definitely would love to try :)
I tried this recipe yesterday as were snowed in!! I loved it, thank you for sharing!!
This. looks. delicious! I actually have some arborio rice waiting to be used up in the kitchen and I think this just might be how I’m going to use it up. :)
Here’s a recipe I love that uses arborio rice – it’s not risotto, but I promise it’s tasty. I love the lemony flavor and the olives. Sometimes I’ll add a chicken breast on top to make a meal. http://www.foodandwine.com/recipes/lemony-rice-parsley-salad
Yum! Will definitely be giving that one a try – love the liveliness of lemon in creamy dishes!
Can I just say that even though I’m not a mushroom person, your awesome, drool-worthy photography makes me want to dive head first into this!
Haha, why thanks Anele!
I love risotto, but I hate how time consuming it is. I found an Ina Garten risotto recipe that is SO EASY! You put 4 cups of chicken broth and 1.5 cups of Arborio rice in a dutch oven and bake at 350 for I think 45 minutes. It cooks the rice perfectly! Once you pull it out of the oven you add a few things – an extra cup of broth, some wine, butter, parmesean – but you could totally tailor it to fit your taste. It just takes a minute to stir the remaining ingredients in – the rice is cooked and hot and has absorbed all the liquid. No more standing over your stove stirring for a half hour any more! Hope this helps :)
I need to get myself a dutch oven apparently – guess that’ll be added to our wedding registry!
That is how I got mine! I registered for a bright red Le Cruset dutch oven when I got married – I love it :) Good luck with your upcoming wedding!