A follow-up to Autumn Produce
Last week Jack surprised me with a lovely savory mushroom and sausage risotto. He found the recipe at Epicurious and was inspired by the large number of rave reviews and the cooler weather.
Made with Madeira and butter, it's a heavyweight contender and oh, so damned good. We had it as the main dish with a salad on the side, but decided in future to serve it in smaller portions (think tasting menu size) as a primi or first course. We've also thought about cutting back on the amount of butter and possibly using olive oil instead to lighten it up a little, as well as adding reconstituted dried porcini mushrooms to the mushroom mix and the "porcini water" to the chicken broth.
The leftovers freeze well and can be made into risotto patties. Have them for dinner with a salad or, if you're feeling really decadent, for brunch with a fried egg on top.
Wild Mushroom and Sausage Risotto
4 main course or 8 starter servings
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 pound Italian sweet sausage, casings removed, crumbled into 1/2-inch pieces
8 ounces portobello mushrooms, stemmed, dark gills scraped out, caps diced
10 ounces fresh shiitake mushrooms, stemmed, diced
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
1 teaspoon chopped fresh oregano
1 1/2 cups Madeira
6 cups chicken stock or canned low-salt chicken broth
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
1 large onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups arborio rice or other medium-grain rice (about 13 ounces)
1 cup freshly grated Asiago cheese
Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add sausage and sauté until beginning to brown, about 3 minutes. Add all mushrooms, thyme, and oregano and sauté until mushrooms are tender, about 10 minutes. Add 1/2 cup Madeira; boil until almost absorbed, about 1 minute. Set aside.
Bring stock to simmer in large saucepan; remove from heat and cover to keep hot. Melt butter in heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic and sauté until onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Add rice; stir 2 minutes. Add remaining 1 cup Madeira; simmer until absorbed, about 2 minutes. Add 1 cup hot stock; simmer until almost absorbed, stirring often, about 3 minutes. Continue to cook until rice is just tender and mixture is creamy, adding more stock by cupfuls, stirring often and allowing most stock to be absorbed before adding more, about 25 minutes. Stir in sausage mixture. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Transfer to serving bowl. Pass cheese separately.