Make Your Kitchen Smell Yummy! Sausage and Wild Mushroom Risotto

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Tonight I did something that is becoming easier to accomplish, and that is making risotto.  Yes, it’s a little time consuming, but now that I’ve figured out how to “do it”, I enjoy the process.  The fun part is concocting flavors that work.  I discovered a few with this dish that worked well.  My goal is to make one different risotto each month through the fall and winter.

I love sausage in general and I worked with both sweet and hot Italian sausage.  I took the sausage out of the casing and broke into bits.  I then threw in fresh thyme, oregano and some basil, along with onions and garlic.  The kitchen smelled absolutely wonderful and savory.  At this point, I added the mushrooms I had on hand.  Shittake, crimini, basic white buttons and another kind (not sure what they were!) and cooked those down, too.

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I think I worked somewhat backwards, but after about 10 minutes of gently cooking this down, I realized I didn’t have any Madeira wine, so I Googled for substitutes…thanks Kitchen Savvy!  That lead me to scavenging my bar cabinet, which led me to finding a bottle of port….which lead me to deglazing a bit….which led me to more flavors.  I added the port (about 1 cup?) and let that reduce a bit.  Then I added some reduced balsamic vinegar I had (maybe a tablespoon or so).  Cooked that down a bit more to reduce. 

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Gave it a taste and was satisfied, so I moved onto the “labor” part of the risotto making.  I had a pot of chicken stock heated up and ready for adding to the risotto.  I first added 1 cup of Arborio (I use the 365 brand from Whole Foods, found I like the packaging, go figure) to my now season stock pot with much less butter than called for.  Sauteed for 2 minutes or so, then added more port and reduced balsamic.  Cooked that down a bit, then began adding the stock.

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25 minutes later, I had dinner ready.  Served up the risotto with fresh greens and a honey/mustard/herb vinaigrette.  Also, a small glass of wine.  A very fine, satisfying end to a fun food making process.  Enjoy!

 

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