Mushroom and Pancetta Risotto

I have never made a risotto before….. I know, I know, how has this happened… I don’t know! I think risotto for me has always been a bit scary, if you do not get it right then you can end up with crunchy rice or a claggy mess. Also, risotto takes time, and finding the time to make it with the care and attention it deserves is a rare thing, but find the time I did!

For my first ever risotto I decided a recipe was needed and I need to stick to it ( I have a tendency to use a recipe as a starting point but then head off on my own). So staying Italian and traditional I am finding inspiration from two Italian cooking gods Antonio Carluccio and Gennaro Contaldo and this recipe is based on the Risotto with mixed mushrooms recipe in The Greedy Italians Eat Italy book. ( I of course went off piste and changed it up a little bit!)

Mushroom and Pancetta Risotto

300g Portobello mushrooms ( sliced)

1 small onion ( chopped)

100g chopped pancetta

300g risotto rice

1.5 litres chicken or vegetable stock

50g parmesan

salt and pepper to season

olive oil or olive oil spray

knob of butter

The ingredients ready to go

The ingredients ready to go

Clean the mushrooms and slice.

chopped mushrooms

chopped mushrooms

Fry the onion in some oil or spray oil, after a couple of minutes add the pancetta and fry until the pancetta is cooked.  When the onions and pancetta begin to colour add the mushrooms to the pan and continue to fry over a medium heat for a couple of minutes.

fry the onions and pancetta

fry the onions and pancetta

Add the rice to the pan and stir for a minute until all the grains are coated in the fat. Start to add the stock ( preferably hot) ladle by ladle. Wait until each ladle full is absorbed before adding the next one. This is where patience is key!

the patience game, adding the stock

the patience game, adding the stock

When the rice is al dente, remove from the heat, season with salt and pepper and stir in the parmesan and the butter.

add the parmesan

add the parmesan

stir in the parmesan to the risotto and serve!

stir in the parmesan to the risotto and serve!

Serve hot!

Enjoy!

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