First posted: May 18, 2012

Mushroom and Truffle Oil Risotto


For no particular reason the well-loved Italian fungo  has been featuring on our home menu quite a lot lately. Actually, for no particular reason is probably rather inadequate. There are many reasons, starting with if you make mushrooms the hero of your dish it means big bang for your buck because they were made to ooze flavor, and are best friends with good old staples such as pasta, risotto and ciabatta. And also, Italian food is made for feeding people you love, and that’s just what we needed when we had a merry rabble of in-laws and friends round for dinner on Wednesday night.

I am fully aware that this post follows quite closely to my Posh Mushrooms on Toast story, but given that it comes in the form of a rich, beautiful risotto enhanced by the delicate yet charming flavours of the truffle oil, I hope you’ll all forgive me. Also, I haven’t featured risotto on my blog since my Baked Beetroot and Goats Cheese version early last year, and though you can find it with Lemon & Asparagus and as a baked version with Butternut & Sage in my book, I thought I’d be magnanimous and send this your way.

* A note about Truffle Oil… 1. It is exquisite, and the queen of Franck Dangereux’s Mushroom and Ricotta Ravioli that brought about my Food-Barn-Inspired-Mushroom-Linguini. 2. It is exquisitely expensive – about R120 for 75ml, BUT you only use about a teaspoon full for an entire risotto dish, so it’s got legs and adds a whole new level of delicious complexity to food. 3. Epicurean experiments are FUN so go get some.



Cooks in:        Serves:4

  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 large clove garlic, chopped
  • 4 Tbsp butter
  • 500g chopped mixed mushrooms (I use brown and button)
  • 1 heaped cup arborio (risotto) rice
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 700ml stock (I use lamb)
  • About 2/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 3/4 tsp truffle oil (optional)
  • Handful chopped fresh parsley
  • Salt and pepper

What to do

1. Heat the oil in a large, heavy based saucepan and add the onion, cook for 1 minute then and garlic. Cook over medium heat for 2-3 minutes, until softened. Add the butter, allow to melt and then add the mushrooms and fry for a further 2-3 minutes, until browned.

2. Add in the rice and stir until well-coated in the oil. Pour in the wine and simmer, stirring, until the liquid has been absorbed. Add a ladleful of the stock and simmer, stirring again, until the liquid has been absorbed. Continue adding the stock in this way, until all the liquid has been absorbed and the rice is plump and tender and just passed al-dente. Add in the truffle oil and stir well.

3. Remove the pot from the heat and add in the parsley, parmesan and salt and pepper to taste. Serve into pre-warmed bowls and eat immediately.

* I like to serve mushroom risotto with slivers of rare steak on the side and a mixed green salad.

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