Fungus Freak

You know that old joke about being on a see-food diet?
I'm often on it.


The day after Thanksgiving (known to some as Black Friday, but I don't go for that), we took my parents to one of my favorite places, the Louisiana State Arboretum


Schooled in horticulture and not mycology, I should have paid more attention to the plant life.


But what's above my eye level doesn't catch my eye nearly as much as what's below.


The word fungus doesn't have the same vibe as, say, flower.  But I think fungi can be as beautiful as flowers.


Part-way through our hike, I started craving earthy mushrooms, thinking about all the ways I could cook them. 
I've always wanted to learn how to identify wild ones.  Some hunt wild turkey.  Others, wild boar.  Me, I'd like to bag some wild mushrooms.
Not in the arboretum, of course.

But I don't know the difference between edible, psychotropic, and deadly.
For all I know, this itty bitty cutie could lay me out cold.


Gambling isn't something I do very well.
But, I can shop like nobody's business.
Just not on Black Friday.

Making risotto is a lot like hiking in the woods.

Quiet, rhythmic movement.  

A long, peaceful journey.

Good to sit down after it's over.

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Mushroom Risotto

8 oz mushrooms, chopped or sliced
a couple of tsp vegetable oil
salt & pepper to taste
2 TBSP olive oil
about 1/2 cup chopped onion
1 c Arborio rice
1/2 c white wine, room temperature
about 3 1/2-4 cups chicken stock (you may not need the full amount)
a pinch or two of dried thyme
salt & pepper to taste
1/4 c Parmesan cheese, plus more for topping
chopped fresh parsley

Simmer the stock in a saucepan.

Heat vegetable oil in a large skillet over high heat.  Sear the mushrooms so that they brown on the edges.  Season with salt and pepper and remove from the pan.

Lower the heat to medium and add the olive oil.  Add the onion and saute until translucent.  Add the Arborio, stirring to coat each grain with oil.  Saute for a few minutes until the rice starts to color.

Add the wine, stirring constantly until the liquid is gone.  Add 1/2 cup warm chicken stock and dried thyme.  Stir while cooking until all of the liquid is gone. 

Continue adding stock, stirring, and cooking until the liquid is gone.  When the risotto is close to being done, you may want to start adding stock 1/4 cup at a time to avoid overcooking.

When the risotto is the texture you'd like, stir in the mushrooms and Parmesan cheese and season with salt and pepper.  Top with chopped parsley and more Parmesan.



linking with:
Love Bakes Good CakesFood on Friday: Mushrooms @ Carole's Chatter
Nap-Time CreationsHearth & Soul HopPermanetPosies.comLark's Country Heart



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