Scented with a shitake mushroom broth, woodsy thyme, and dry white wine, this creamy dish is refined comfort food, not to mention significanly healthier than butter-and-cheese laden varieties. The key to a perfect risotto is all in the wrist, or so to speak; constant stirring is a must. Feel free to add other vegetables such as broccoli or leeks to this recipe; it's incredibly versatile and easy to dress up with a variety of herbs and spices.
Prep Time: 40 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour, 20 minutes
- 4 ounces dried shitake mushrooms
- 1/2 cup boiling water
- 2½ cups vegetable broth
- ¼ cup lemon juice
- 2 cups chopped spinach
- 1 t. sea salt, plus more to taste
- 2 T. olive oil, divided
- 2 large cloves garlic, finely chopped
- ½ cup finely chopped onions
- 8 ounces crimini mushrooms, sliced
- 1 t. dried thyme
- 1 cup uncooked Arborio rice
- ½ cup dry white wine
- 1 T. dairy-free soy margarine
- 1 ½ T. nutritional yeast
- Black pepper, to taste
1. In a small bowl, combine the boiling water with the shitake mushrooms, and let them soak, uncovered for 30 minutes. Drain the liquid into a medium-sized saucepan and discard the mushrooms. Add the vegetable broth to the sauce pan, bring the mixture to a simmer and cover.
2. In a small bowl, toss the spinach, lemon juice and 1 t. of the salt. Set aside.
3. In a heavy bottomed saucepan over medium heat, heat 1 T. of the olive oil. Add the chopped garlic and onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are tender and translucent, about 6-8 minutes. Add the mushrooms and thyme, and cook until the mushrooms are soft, about 4 minutes more. Add the remaining 1 T. of olive oil and the rice, and, stirring constantly, cook until the rice is evenly coated and sounds like crispy rice cereal in the pan, making snapping and popping noises, about 4 minutes. Add the wine, stirring constantly, until all of the liquid is completely absorbed.
4. Ladle ¾ cup of the simmering broth into the rice and cook, continuing to stir, until most of the liquid is absorbed.Continue to add the broth in ¾-cup increments, allowing the liquid to be absorbed before another addition, until the rice is translucent around the edges but still solid in the middle and the rice is of a creamy consistency, about 20 minutes.
5. Add the spinach and cook for just about 2-3 minutes, stirring constantly, or until the spinach is wilted and bright green. Stir in the dairy-free soy margarine and nutritional yeast. Add salt and pepper to taste and serve immediately.