Autumn kale & parsnip risotto
with gremolata and mushrooms
A little story about this dish. I went for a stroll in the woods last week. Almost at the end, my eyes suddenly fell on this beautiful group of brown shiny mushrooms. Though I’m not a very experienced mushroom hunter, I used my most reliable sources for determination. Once home, mum freaked out when I said I sorted out dinner for the evening. So we did some more research to be sure what turned out to be beautiful chestnut boletus. And here we are, still alive! Yet, I do NOT encourage anyone to go mushroom picking without company of an experienced person! Anyway, here is a risotto recipe with the best ingredients autumn has to offer, and of course.. the mushrooms .
Two white onions
7 cloves garlic
2 celery sticks
500 gr risotto rice
300 ml white wine
2 liters vegetable stock
100 gr organic Parmigiano Reggiano, grated (use 2 tbs nutritional yeast to keep vegan)
300 gr of chopped kale
100 gr organic butter (or vegan)
500 gr mushrooms (chestnut mushrooms work, or buy king oyster mushrooms if you want to go more fancy.
small bunch of fresh thyme
A bunch of fresh parsley
Salt, pepper & olive oil
Start by heating up your vegetable stock (I’d make my own by adding some onions, garlic, celery, carrot, bay leaf, fennel, herbs, etc.. to 2L of water. Simmer 1-3 hours, then heavily salt). Great for using leftovers. Though, a stock cube works perfect too. Also heat up a pot of boiling salted water. As soon as it boils, blanch the kale. Then drain and set aside.
Preheat a large pot for the risotto on low heat. Finely chop the onions, 4 garlic cloves, celery and parsnip. Add to the pan with some olive oil and salt and cook for 10 minutes. Add the risotto rice, cook for another minute or two, then deglaze the pan with the white wine. Whilst you keep stirring every 30 seconds or so, keep adding vegetable stock ladle by ladle. Continue until the risotto rice is cooked. Then add salt and pepper, the parmesan cheese, half of the butter and just enough stock to make sure the risotto will be nice and creamy. Cover the pan with a lid and let the risotto relax for a few minutes. Check for seasoning. Secretly I quite like to add a splash more wine at the end.
Heat a frying pan on high heat, with some oil. Fry off the kale until some bits get nice and caramelized. Season with salt. You can do this in two portions. Then straightly add to the risotto.
Time for the mushrooms. Slice the mushrooms in half lengthways. In the same pan you used for the kale, with the rest of the butter, 2 smashed garlic cloves and the thyme. Add the mushrooms to the pan and fry on both sides for a few minutes. Add salt and pepper.
To finish the story, make the gremolata by combining the finely chopped parsley, the juice and zest of the lemon, one grated garlic clove, salt and a few tablespoons of olive oil in a bowl.
Time to serve up. First risotto, then mushrooms and finish with a little bit of the gremolata. Bon Appetit!