Whenever I go to a wedding/event that features a DJ or enter a bar that has some form of jukebox, I specifically request all sorts of funk and old school R&B. There’s nothing funnier than having a couple of cocktails and watching a bunch of white people get down to some George Clinton, Rick James, Curtis Mayfield, and Chaka Khan and Rufus. Additionally, I enjoy listening to this music as I prepare dinner on Sundays. Daydrinks are optional.
In my last post, we touched very lightly on my childhood Smurf fixation. What does this have to do with George Clinton? Absolutely nothing. However I will say that implementing a new Smurf character named Funky Smurf, who would basically resemble a blue version of George Clinton, could only result in a positive outcome for all involved. Plus, it will give the Smurfs some fresh material to sing as we render them homeless while making this:
Lady Sensory’s Transient Smurfs Gone Wild Mushroom Risotto
Yeah, the Smurfs live in mushroom houses. See what I did there? Ha. Okay, let’s get cooking. I have adapted my recipe from one that I found here. You will need:
2 tbsp butter
2 1/2 cups of a variety of mushrooms (more info on mushroom types below), chopped into 1/2 inch pieces
1/3 cup dry white wine (I used a Sauvignon Blanc)
1/3 cup dry vermouth
6 cups chicken stock or broth – you can make your own; since I was out of homemade, I used a combination of a 32 oz box of stock (4 cups) and 1 can (2 cups) of low sodium broth for this one.
1-2 cloves garlic, finely minced or pressed
4-5 shallots, finely chopped
1/2 small red onion, finely chopped
(the total of the onion, shallot, garlic mixture should equal around 1/2 cup)
2 cups arborio rice (risotto)
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1 tbsp finely chopped parsley
1 tbsp finely chopped chives
Heat stock/broth in a saucepan until close to boiling and reduce heat to keep hot while preparing the risotto. In a heavy, medium to large saucepan or 4.5 qt fancy pot, heat 2 tbsp butter until melted, then add the onion/shallot/garlic mixture until translucent and slightly golden. Add your mushroom mixture and sauté for about 5 minutes. This time around, I used a combination of shiitake, oyster, royal trumpet, white button mushrooms and cremini (baby bella or brown button) mushrooms. I have used the light orange-yellow chanterelle mushrooms in the past as well. Basically any flavorful, woodsy combination of mushrooms will do. Buttons are underrated and do impart a nice mushroom flavor, which is why I use them in soups, stocks, etc., so if that is all you have, go right ahead and use them. Hen of the Woods mushrooms are also nice (and very tasty in stocks). Once the mushroom/onion mixture has released some juice, add the 2 cups of risotto and stir until coated with butter and juices. Allow to cook, stirring for about 2-3 minutes. Then add the wine & vermouth and raise the heat so the wine comes to a boil. Once that liquid evaporates (about 3 minutes), add hot stock, about 1/2 – 2/3 cup at a time, and allow to absorb almost completely before adding the next 1/2 – 2/3 cup. You will need to keep stirring to keep the rice from sticking to the pan. As I mentioned in my previous risotto post, it’s not hard, but will take a time committment of about 30-40 minutes to prepare. When the entire pot of stock has been added, stir in grated Parmesan, then add salt and pepper to your liking. Finish by adding the parsley and chives for added color and flavor.
This makes a solid 4-6 servings, so please be Smurfy and share and share alike, since they already have a Greedy Smurf. You can use vegetable stock to make this completely vegetarian if you so desire, but be cognizant that you are still putting the Smurfs out on the street with your extreme mushroom use. Combined with any follicular challenges, people could potentially confuse you with Gargamel.