Hearty Spinach and Mushroom Risotto

MacSuzie | Spinach and Mushroom Risotto

After I moved to the Portland area and made my first local friend, she and I spent a day together shopping and eating (can anyone say “Real Housewives of Portland?” hahahaha!!!) in what has become one of my favorite areas of Portland – 23rd Street/Nob Hill. We ate lunch at this adorable Italian restaurant called Serratto where I had an amazing mushroom risotto. It was perfectly cooked and deliciously rich and creamy. After that, I made it a mission of mine to recreate the recipe at home. I think I may have succeeded…

Kimmi – this one is for you!

 

You’ll Need:

4 cups mushroom broth, heated
2 Tbs. olive oil or butter, for cooking
2 shallots or 1/4 cup onion, finely chopped
salt and pepper, to taste
6-8 oz. of your favorite mushrooms, sliced
1 cup Arborio rice (see notes)
1/2 cup dry white wine (see notes)
4 oz. baby spinach, chopped
2 Tbs. butter
1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan, plus more for serving

 

What To Do:

Before you start the risotto, get your broth going on the stove. Heat it until steaming, and then keep it hot in a small saucepan on the stove near your risotto pot. You want it hot, but not boiling.

By the way, if you don’t have mushroom broth on hand, vegetable or chicken broth will be great. Even just plan water will work fine.

 

MacSuzie | Spinach and Mushroom Risotto

Side note: let’s talk cheese. I highly recommend getting a block of parmesan and grating your own. The flavor and quality are so much better, and you don’t have any extra ingredients like anti-caking agents, etc. You don’t have to get the super expensive Italian parm, but PLEASE don’t buy the stuff in the green can, I beg you!

To save time while I’m cooking, and because I often use parm as my go-to cheese, I usually get a couple of blocks at a time. I just cut it into pieces and throw them in my food processor, pulsing it until everything gets broken up, then running it continuously until its finely grated down. I store in an air tight container in the fridge and it keeps very nicely that way.

 

MacSuzie | Spinach and Mushroom RisottoHere’s a quick tip for chopping shallots and onions. Prep the onion or shallot by cutting off the tip (non-root side). If it is large, also cut in half down through the root. Now, with the cut end up and root end down, carefully slice a couple of slices ALMOST all the way down to the root. The number of cuts will depend on the size of the shallot or onion. Then, lay it down on the cutting board and slice several cuts vertically from root to tip, again ALMOST all the way to the root. Next, just make horizontal slices as you normally would. The result? Chopped shallots!

This is no scientific statement, but I honestly feel like my eyes don’t water as much with this method, and it seems to be a quicker process. Perhaps just my imagination, who knows… (By the way, if you want things a little more fine, just run your knife through again to get the pieces a little smaller.)

 

MacSuzie | Spinach and Mushroom Risotto

Another side note: I used a mix of crimini and shitake mushrooms, but you can use whatever you want! If fresh mushrooms aren’t available, give dried mushrooms a try. Just reconstitute them in the warming broth, and then add them to the recipe as you normally would.

 

MacSuzie | Spinach and Mushroom RisottoOk, enough distractions, back to the risotto! In a hot pan over medium high heat, add 2 Tbs. olive oil or butter, and the shallots. Cook for about 1 minute or until the shallots start to get soft. Shallots aren’t as tough as onions, so they won’t take as long to cook.

 

MacSuzie | Spinach and Mushroom RisottoAdd in the mushrooms and cook until they are tender and browned, about 5 minutes.

 

MacSuzie | Spinach and Mushroom RisottoThrow (ok, don’t really throw) in the rice and toss to coat the rice with 2 Tbs. butter/oil. Cook for another 2-3 minutes, toasting the rice a little in the process, but not burning/browning. It will smell a little nutty, kinda like popcorn.

Oh look… Another photo of my spoon… Hahahaha!

 

MacSuzie | Spinach and Mushroom RisottoAdd the white wine and lower the heat to medium/low. The rice will start to plump :)

 

MacSuzie | Mushroom RisottoWhen the wine is almost all the way absorbed, add about 1/2 cup of hot broth and continue to cook. Stir occasionally and let the rice soak up the broth. You know you’ll need to add more broth when you can scrape your spoon along the bottom of the pan and the spoon leaves a path in the rice that doesn’t immediately go away.

 

MacSuzie | Spinach and Mushroom RisottoContinue to add broth in 1/2 cup increments. After the first few additions of broth, it will start to get creamy and take a little longer to soak it up each time.

After about 15 minutes, or when your broth is almost gone, taste a little and check to see if the rice is cooked. It’s done when it is still a little al dente (a little chewy), but NOT hard or crunchy. If you run out of broth and the rice still needs more liquid, just add some hot water and continue to cook. Alternatively, you may not use all your broth. How much you use will kind of depends on how you like your risotto – some like it very thick and “sticky” and others like it a little more “loose” or soupy. Both are good, and how I make mine changes each time, depending on the ingredients I’m including and/or what I’m serving with the risotto.

 

MacSuzie | Spinach and Mushroom RisottoWhen the rice is cooked, and the last of the broth is mostly soaked up, turn the heat almost all the way down and add the chopped spinach. My risotto at Serratto didn’t have spinach, but I need more leafy greens in my life :)

 

MacSuzie | Spinach and Mushroom RisottoCook for about 1 minute, or just until the spinach has wilted down.

 

MacSuzie | Spinach and Mushroom RisottoRemove the pan from the heat and immediately add the two tablespoons of butter…

 

MacSuzie | Spinach and Mushroom Risotto…and the parmesan cheese! Stir vigorously to “whip” in the butter and cheese. In fancy schmancy Italian terms, this process of creaming in the butter and cheese last minute is called “mantecare.” Thank you, Lidia Bastianich, for getting me a little closer to my Italian roots ;-)

 

MacSuzie | Spinach and Mushroom RisottoA bite for me… I have to make sure I’m not about to poison my husband, right?

 

MacSuzie | Spinach and Mushroom RisottoAnd a plate for you! Ok, this is really for me again, but if you were here, I’d definitely share!

Maybe…

 

MacSuzie | Spinach and Mushroom RisottoServe your risotto immediately, adding additional cheese, if desired. This recipe makes about 4 side servings, or 2 hearty main dish servings.

Enjoy!

♥ MacSuzie

 

Additional Notes:

For this recipe, you really need a short grain variety of rice. Arborio is my favorite, but any other short grain rice would work just as well.

Make sure you are using a dry, not sweet, white wine. If you find white wine to be a little too acidic, a smooth dry vermouth will also work great. (I happen to keep vermouth on hand for dirty martinis, so I use that)

 

Spinach Mushroom Risotto
Serves 2
Write a review
Print
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
35 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
35 min
Ingredients
  1. 4 cups mushroom broth, heated (see notes)
  2. 2 Tbs. olive oil or butter, for cooking
  3. 2 shallots or 1/4 cup onion, finely chopped
  4. salt and pepper, to taste
  5. 6-8 oz. of your favorite mushrooms, sliced (see notes)
  6. 1 cup Arborio rice (see notes)
  7. 1/2 cup dry white wine (see notes)
  8. 4 oz. baby spinach, chopped
  9. 2 Tbs. butter
  10. 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan, plus more for serving (see notes)
Instructions
  1. First, get your broth going on the stove. Heat it until steaming, and then keep it hot in a small saucepan on the stove near your risotto pot. You want it hot, but not boiling.
  2. In a hot pan over medium high heat, add 2 Tbs. olive oil/butter and shallots. Cook for about 1 minute or until the shallots start to get soft. Shallots aren't as tough as onions, so they won't take as long to cook.
  3. Add in the mushrooms and cook until they are tender and browned, about 5 minutes.
  4. Throw (ok, don't really throw) in the rice and toss to coat the rice with the butter/oil. Cook for another 2-3 minutes, toasting the rice a little in the process, but not burning/browning. It will smell a little nutty, kinda like popcorn.
  5. Add the white wine and lower the heat to medium/low.
  6. When the wine is almost all the way absorbed, add about 1/2 cup of hot broth and continue to cook. Stir occasionally and let the rice soak up the broth. You know you'll need to add more broth when you can scrape your spoon along the bottom of the pan and the spoon leaves a path in the rice that doesn't immediately go away.
  7. Continue to add broth in 1/2 cup increments. After the first few additions of broth, it will start to take a little longer to soak it up each time. After about 15 minutes, or when your broth is almost gone, taste a little and check to see if the rice is cooked. It's done when it is still a little al dente (a little chewy), but NOT hard or crunchy. If you run out of broth and the rice still needs more liquid, just add some hot water and continue to cook. Alternatively, you may not use all your broth.
  8. When the rice is cooked, turn the heat almost all the way down and add the chopped spinach. Cook for about 1 minute, or just until the spinach has wilted down.
  9. Remove the pan from the heat and immediately add the two tablespoons of butter and the parmesan cheese. Stir vigorously to "whip" in the butter and cheese.
  10. Serve immediately, adding additional cheese, if desired. Yields 4 side servings, or 2 hearty main dish servings.
Notes
  1. If you don't have mushroom broth on hand, vegetable or chicken broth will be great. Even just plan water will work great.
  2. I used a mix of crimini and shitake mushrooms, but you can use whatever you want! If fresh mushrooms aren't available, give dried mushrooms a try. Just reconstitute them in the warming broth, and then add them to the recipe as you normally would.
  3. For this recipe, you really need a short grain variety of rice. Arborio is my favorite, but any other short grain rice would work just as well.
  4. Make sure you are using a dry, not sweet, white wine. If you find white wine to be a little too acidic, a smooth dry vermouth will also work great. (I happen to keep vermouth on hand for dirty martinis, so I use that)
  5. As always, I highly recommend getting a block of parmesan and grating your own. The flavor and quality are so much better, and you don't have any extra ingredients like anti-caking agents, etc. PLEASE don't buy the stuff in the green can, I beg you! For ease of cooking, and because I use parm as my go-to cheese, I usually get a couple of blocks at a time. I just cut it into pieces and throw them in my food processor, pulsing it until everything gets broken up, then running it continuously until its finely grated down. I store in an air tight container in the fridge and it keeps very nicely that way.
MacSuzie http://macsuzie.com/

2 Responses to Hearty Spinach and Mushroom Risotto

  1. Pinning this now! Looks like a great recipe. I LOVE risottos and have found them much easier than they look!

    • MacSuzie says:

      Ditto! I don’t know why people are intimidated by risotto – I think risotto is easier than trying to make the perfect fluffy rice, hahaha. Risotto is just a bunch of stirring! LOL and cheese…

Let me know what you think!

Top