2 chicken breasts (or 1 full breast if attached), diced to 1″ cubes, seasoned with salt and pepper
1 large onion, diced
8 oz cremini, oyster and shiitake mushrooms
2½ cups arborrio rice
28 ounces of homemade chicken stock
3 tbsp butter
½ cup wine
½ cup Parmesan Cheese, fresh grated
Heat a large pan or ceramic dutch oven over high heat.
Add 1 tbsp olive oil.
When oil is shimmery, add diced chicken.
Cook until browned on all sides.
Add diced onions and mushrooms.
When vegetables are slightly browned, add butter and stir.
Lower heat to medium-low, add rice, stir well.
Let rice brown just slightly (think “toasted” for a little flavor)
Add a little bit of stock and wine- just enough to keep the consistency liquid.
Stir frequently until rice thickens.
Add a little more stock until it is just barely liquid. Repeat stirring frequently until thickened and adding just enough stock to keep it from burning or becoming too thick.
When your stock is gone, and the risotto has become thicker, taste a bit of it.
If the rice is too crunchy for your taste, add a little water and proceed with the steps above. Risotto should be slightly al dente- just a slight, teeny crunch when bit. If you over cook the rice, it will become a bit gummy- but its all individual tastes.
Add diced green onions just before your risotto is done cooking- you won’t want them to overcook. If using frozen peas, add them with the last addition of stock so they thaw and cook just briefly.
Add parmesan cheese and stir to fully incorporate.
When risotto is thick enough to not spread all over a plate, but not so thick you can shape it like mashed potatoes, it is ready.
Serve when warm.
Grate fresh parmesan cheese over the top and enjoy!
– Focus on fresh. Find locally sourced ingredients to bring out strong flavors without adding a ton of extra items. Fresh, simple food shines in easy recipes like this risotto. You can add seasonal vegetables as you like- asparagus in the spring, zucchini in the summer, squash in the fall.
– One pot, or two. While this can be made with just one pot, it is helpful to heat your stock on the stove in another pot. If your kitchen is cool, this is a step you won’t want to skip, or the risotto will take longer.
– Stir! The creamy, seductive texture of risotto comes from the rice releasing its starches, not from cream. To get the perfect texture, you need to release a lot of those starches! Stir, stir, and stir some more! Risotto is not a hard meal to make, but it does take a lot of hands-on time stirring.
– Say cheese! Limit the amount of salt you use in the early stages of the risotto in favor of salty cheese later on.
– Save the leftovers. If you are making a big batch and know you won’t eat it all, I often pull about half the recipe just before it’s done and box it up for leftovers. That way, I can add them to a pan with a little more stock and cook it fresh the next day. If you do end up with leftovers, they are delicious! I prefer to heat it up in a pan versus the microwave, but it works really well either way.