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Wild Mushroom Risotto

Wild mushroom risotto

I love September. It’s the beginning of autumn, the air gets crispy but not too cold, and you can start detecting that lovely autumnal decay smell, which I absolutely adore…

It’s also a season for mushrooms. I always loved chanterelle mushrooms, I’m obsessed with them. In Poland, at this time of year, you can get them anywhere. In UK it’s not so easy, but I managed to find them in one of the shops. The lady at the check out was looking at me funny because I bought few packs (I just couldn’t help myself, and they freeze really well).

And when you get hold of your favourite mushrooms, why not make your favourite dish??!

(Warning for any Italians reading it – I know it’s a blasphemy but I didn’t use arborio or carnarolli rice…In my defence – I wanted to make it healthier and it was still nice and creamy).

Chanterelle Mushroom Risotto:

1 1/2 cup chopped chanterelle mushrooms

2 cups short grain brown rice

1 l vegetable stock

1 cup white wine

2 shallots

1 clove garlic

3 tbsp olive oil

knob of butter

sea salt

pepper

pinch of saffron

1 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary

1 tsp dried oregano

1 tbsp lemon zest

1 cup grated parmesan

fresh parsley

  1. Start by heating olive oil and butter in an iron cast or any heavy pan. Add chopped shallots and fry until translucent. Add garlic and fry for another 2 min.
  2. Add chopped mushrooms and fry for 5 minutes. Then add rice and let it coat with olive oil and butter.
  3. Cook on a medium to low heat adding gradually warm vegetable stock and wine. Let it cook for 30-40 minutes until rice is really soft. Add pinch of saffron,lemon zest, salt, pepper and herbs and mix well. At the end add parmesan, mix it well and let it melt until the rice becomes really creamy. Serve with a sprinkle of chopped parsley on top and a salad.

You have to serve it with an appropriate film, and what’s not more suitable than a film ‘September’ by Woody Allen.

The film wasn’t received well and it didn’t bring a lot of money box-office wise. I don’t really understand why, maybe because people in 1987 were more into fast paced films.

‘September’ ‘s plot was inspired by Chekhov’s ‘Uncle Vanya’ play. Woody Allen wanted the film to look like a play, hence the long shots and one location. You can also see how the film was influenced by Ingmar Bergman’s work. It is a beautifully cast and acted drama. Not a typical Woody Allen film but a gem. And I am also a sucker for a melancholic story with a mother who drinks too much and has to be a centre of attention, suicidal attempts and a beautiful summer house.

What’s not to like, heh?

Enjoy!

Wild mushroom risotto

Wild mushroom risotto

Wild mushroom risotto

 

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About potatofaces

People who cook always go on about precious memories of childhood food one of their family members cooked, how daddy or nanny taught them the importance of cooking and eating together, and they still remember the comfort food they produced, amazing dishes whipped up by brilliant but humble cooks in their family. Well, let me tell you, it was totally different in my family. My mother’s family – totally useless as cooks, who could survive on bread and butter, cooked once a week a terrible, terrible meal, usually some kind of meat piece with lots of brown sauce. Also, they were never bothered about eating together. That’s maybe why most of them were depressed and suicidal. My mother followed that path and couldn’t really cook, and because I never wanted to eat meat, was warning me that ‘one day I will regret it’. Probably because my mother wasn’t into cooking my sister at the age of 12 took over and started producing amazing dinners and cakes. Well, luckily for me and her we weren’t that genetically doomed because apparently my father’s family were gifted in that compartment. I can only presume it was genes, as my father divorced my mother when my sis and me were little and he strongly believed that he also divorced us. So, we were growing up never having any contact with him and as a result, couldn’t learn how to cook from him. That’s why I believe the love of cooking ( and the ability) was just passed to us genetically. My father, short time before he died, unexpectedly felt an urge to contact us. First he gave my sister a mandolin (that’s another thing I know about him- he played a few instruments). My sister refused to talk to him, he then decided to contact me and wanted to spend some time with me. I didn’t want to, as he was a stranger to me (I was 11 or 12 at the time) but as I was promised I could leave whenever I wanted to, I went to the village he lived in. There I tried his mother’s cooking everyone was raving about. It was simple and amazing, I wish they were as family dedicated as they were at baking, cooking, making pastries, wine, tinctures, you name it. But I ate, drunk, and got bored of strangers who were my family and demanded to be let to go home. One of the last things my father said to me was that I should start learning English because I might need it one day, which I ignored for another 16 years… Because my sister was such a domestic goddess I wasn’t really bothered about cooking. I got hooked properly after my son was born and I wanted him to eat healthy and get everything he needed, especially that it wasn’t his choice to be a vegetarian (yet). And that is how the story begins…

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