A few months ago, my husband and I had an amazing dining experience at La Quercia (4th/Alma). The tasting menu included a mouth-watering ‘made to order’ mushroom risotto that I just haven’t been able to stop thinking about. I tried to recreate the dish at home but the flavours were flat and the rice overly gummy. Then, the fates aligned.
Vancouver Olive Oil Company (2571 West Broadway) received a batch of new oils including Spanish Manzanillo Olive Oil, Roasted Sesame Oil and Mushroom and Sage Olive Oil. I received a dash of inspiration from my neighbour who adores VOOC and has been cooking with their oils and vinegars for weeks on end (thanks Melanie).
And here we have this wonderful dish that – while it can’t compete with La Quercia’s chefs Adam Pegg and Lucais Syme – is a smashing home rendition for the novice chef.
Mushroom and Sage Risotto
6 cups chicken broth, divided
¼ cup VOOC’s Mushroom and Sage Olive Oil, divided (plus extra to finish the dish)
2 pound assorted mushrooms, thinly sliced
2 shallots, thinly diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 1/2 cups Arborio rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
sea salt to taste
freshly ground black pepper to taste
4 tablespoons butter
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
In a saucepan, warm the broth over low heat. Warm 3 tablespoons olive oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir in the mushrooms, and cook until soft, about 3 minutes. Remove mushrooms and their liquid, and set aside.
Add 1 tablespoon olive oil to skillet, and stir in the shallots and garlic. Cook 1 minute. Add rice, stirring to coat with oil, about 2 minutes. When the rice has taken on a pale, golden color, pour in wine, stirring constantly until the wine is fully absorbed. Add 1/2 cup broth to the rice, and stir until the broth is absorbed. Continue adding broth 1/2 cup at a time, stirring continuously, until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is al dente, about 15 to 20 minutes.
Remove from heat, and stir in mushrooms with their liquid, butter, chives, and parmesan. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Finish with a drizzle of olive oil.
Vancouver Olive Oil Company, 2571 West Broadway, 604-737-7171, Vooc.ca
Last modified: March 23, 2012