I was doing the grocery shopping on Saturday, nothing exciting about that, BUT when I went over to the mushroom section I found these!!!!!
500 grams of sweet, sweet love for the low price of 7euro.
After drooling and carrying on like a pork chop, I whizzed the trolley around to the rice aisle and grabbed some riso superfino ROMA, it was time for risotto!!!
We haven’t gone down this road yet for two reasons a) It hasn’t been cold enough and b) Alex hates risotto. I know this shouldn’t be a reason not to buy it but sometimes you need to fight the battles you know you have a chance of winning and other times….you just wait for a sleep over.
I love porcini mushrooms but to be honest I can’t remember the last time I had fresh ones? I’ve softened bucket loads of the dried variety but fresh? Saturday night was going to be an adults only dinner that much I knew. Max would of loved the risotto, however, I knew he would love a bowl of noodles with a fried egg more!
I didn’t want to shadow the flavour of the porcini so I made a porcini, pancetta and spinach risotto with a hint of lemon (it cuts through the spinach beautifully removing that fury taste you can get on your tongue). I don’t have much to say except it was delicious; the delicate porcini flavour was paired beautifully with the sweetness of the pancetta not to mention the perfume when cooking this dish, I thought my nostrils were going to be sniffed into the back of my head at one stage. The rice was creamy and I also used a pecorino cheese instead of parmesan. The flavours melded beautifully letting the porcini shine and rightly so.
I think everyone knows how to cook a risotto and if not I bet you have a recipe book on your shelf that tells you how, however, if you are needing a recipe look here and omit the flavours with mushrooms and bacon-easy!
The porcini love didn’t stop there, oh no!
I knew we had people coming over for a late Sunday lunch and I wanted to use the rest of the porcini. I was driving with my friend Sue on Sunday morning just outside of Florence when I rang Nic and directed the way I wanted the potatoes done. I know that sounds very bossy but I had my mind wrapped around this dish for a while and I knew he wouldn’t mind. Basically Nic sauteed the sliced porcini mushrooms with butter, garlic, salt and pepper then peeled and sliced potatoes into chunky slices and tossed them in with the sauteed mushrooms. He then put them in a baking dish, poured over warm chicken stock not quite covering all of the potatoes and baked it in a preheated oven (180 degree) for about an hour or until potatoes are soft. This is a very easy and tasty side for any meal, we just happened to serve it with BBQ meats (ribs, sausage and chicken), pesto beans and a radicchio and soft cheese and tomato salad (the cheese was a mystery….I was trying to buy a goat cheese but??). Sadly I have no photos of this lunch as the Prosecco came out in the beginning and life was a little relaxing, so make some of your own and let me know how it goes (the potatoes will work just as well with dried porcini soaked in the chicken stock).
I consider this a massive Italian treat and am truly loving this year……now I just have to go to the truffle festival this coming weekend and I’ll be in heaven!