Autumn – season of mists and mellow fruitfulness. Of winter coats, socks in boots, and hunting for missing gloves. Pulling the curtains earlier and earlier, putting on the central heating. Shaking out the heavy duvet – then a blanket – and another. Looking out a nightlight for the toddler and explaining for the umpteenth time that she’s going to bed in the dark because the days are shorter.
Of roasting a chicken on Saturday, making stock on Sunday and throwing together a risotto on Monday.
Autumn is welcomed to no 41 with risotto. Standing, stirring and usually slurping (wine) is a common occurrence on Monday evenings as the weekend’s leftovers are transformed into a dish of comfort food. This week it was chicken, mushrooms and, somewhat randomly, mangetout.
Autumn is also the season of taking photos in artificial light – how I miss the summer!
- 20g butter
- 110g mushrooms, sliced
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 10g butter
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1 onion, diced
- 1 cup arborio rice
- 1 glass white wine
- 500-750ml stock
- 150g cooked chicken, sliced or shredded
- 70g mangetout, sliced
- 2-3 tbsp freshly grated parmesan
- more butter, should you feel decadent
- First, gently fry the mushrooms in butter (I use my risotto pan, alternatively use a small frying pan). Remove and set aside.
- Next, start gently heating your stock in a suitable sized saucepan.
- Heat the oil and butter in a medium sized saute or frying pan. Gently fry the diced onion and garlic until soft.
- Add the arborio rice (if you don't think there's enough butter, feel free to chuck in some more). When the rice and onion and garlic are all mixed together, pour in the glass (or so) of white wine.
- Turn down the heat and stirring gently, slowly add the stock one ladleful at a time, waiting until each ladleful is mostly absorbed before adding the next.
- Sip a glass of wine, talk to your near and dear, or catch up on autumn telly as you stir.
- After three to four ladlefuls, taste your rice. It'll absorb a different volume of stock every time you make it. As you add the last ladleful (when the rice creamy but just a tad too crunchy), add the chicken and mangetout to cook through.
- Finally stir in the freshly grated parmesan and butter.