Easy Oven Risotto with Mushrooms
This is a spin on a recipe I ran across at Epicurious. Theirs was way too fussy, so I stripped it down and made it easy! If you love risotto and are intimidated by the fussy recipes, try this one! It's easy and really delicious!
Servings 6 servings
- Shallow dutch oven roasting pan or oven proof skillet
- sheet pan
- 8 oz Shiitake mushrooms, de-stemmed & cut into 1/2" pieces sub cremini, but shiitake has better texture
- 1 Tbl olive oil to lightly coat mushrooms
- S/P to lightly coat mushrooms
- 1 large shallot, quartered then sliced sub 1/2 cup small diced onion
- 3 cloves garlic, minced about 1 Tbl
- 1 Tbl olive oil
- 2 Tbl butter salted
- 1 lemon, zest and juice reserve juice
- 6 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves about 2 tsp, sub 1 tsp dry thyme
- 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes or more if you like
- 1/2 tsp each S/P
- 1 cup arborio rice (risotto)
- 1/2 cup dry vermouth sub white wine
- 2 1/2 cups chicken broth sub veg broth to make vegetarian
- 1 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 2 tsp fresh basil, finely chopped sub 1 tsp dry basil
- 1 Tbl fresh parsley, finely chopped try to use fresh herb here
- This recipe can be made in one pot if you have a skillet type dutch oven or an oven safe skillet with a lid (or you can cover with foil). If you do not have these, you can start the risotto in a saucepan, then transfer to a 9x9 square dish or pie plate to bake, covered in foil.
- Preheat oven to 375ºF.
- Prep mushrooms and toss in olive oil & S/P on a sheet pan (use parchment paper or cover pan in foil for easy clean up). Put in oven to roast for about 20 minutes.
- While mushrooms are roasting, prep the rest of the veg.
- Put vessel over medium heat and add olive oil and butter. When hot, add in shallot, garlic, thyme, red pepper flakes and lemon zest. Cook shallots until translucent, about 4-5 minutes. Do not brown, just sweat.
- Add rice and S/P. Stir and turn heat up to Med Hi. Stir rice for about 2 minutes then add vermouth. Stir another 2 minutes then add chicken stock and turn up heat to Hi.
- Bring to fast simmer and cook rice for about 10 minutes, uncovered, stirring occasionally. The broth should reduce by about 1/3. Check mushrooms; you want them roasted and a bit dry, but not burnt. If done, remove from oven.
- Turn off heat and add parmesan, basil, parsley and half the reserved lemon juice. Stir thoroughly.
- Mushrooms should be done by this point. If they were not before.
- Risotto should still have some broth on top. If not, add just a bit more broth for the baking. If using a skillet, dot mushrooms on top of risotto and cover. If using a saucepan, put risotto in oven proof dish, add mushrooms and cover with foil.
- Bake (in the 375º oven) for 20 minutes. Check midway to see if risotto has gotten dry, if so, add just a little broth to keep moist.
- Risotto is done when the broth has been absorbed, but it is not dry. The grains should be cooked either al dente (half way) or all the way. I like mine cooked through, but not mushy.
- Check for seasoning and drizzle the last of the lemon juice over the top. Dot with more fresh parsley if you like and serve with lemon wedges.
This risotto can be a side dish, but I like it as the main. It is Italian mac n cheese and SO satisfying! The mushrooms can be left off this dish, but they do offer a nice textural element. The trick to risotto is keeping it moist. It should be loose enough to pour, but not watery. If your risotto is too dry, add stock; if it's too loose, bake uncovered for a bit longer. Cooking the risotto in a saucepan first is the method I used for this recipe. I then poured into a pie plate and baked, covered with foil. If you use the one skillet method, your cook time on the stove and the stock amount may vary. The stovetop cook time could be a bit less since the risotto has more surface area and it may require up to 3 cups of stock. Keep this in mind. As always, DO try to use fresh herbs and do try to use shiitakes. Both will give you a better end product. But, use what you've got! Better to substitute than not cook at all. :)