So unless you’ve been living under a food rock for the past couple of years, you would have heard that it has become a bit trendy to go mushrooming.
Trendy, yes, but for good reason! For when the weather gets cooler here in Victoria and we start to get that autumn rain, you start to find these delicious pine mushrooms (or Saffron Milk Caps) out bush and they really are a delight. And they’re free.
But the markets sell them for $30 a kilo. MWAHAHAHA but those who know where to go get them for free.
I’ve mentioned the free part already havent I? I’ll move on.
So with Molly the Beagle in tow, my partner and I headed out to Woodend yesterday to go a mushroom huntin’!
And its nice because my fella and I aint quite into the same things when it comes to my love of growing and cooking food, so its great that he enjoys this as well. For since moving out to Bacchus Marsh, my fella has become quite the fan of the old outdoor fire. Which requires wood. And according to him, pine cones.
So on we march into the pine forest, him looking for kindling and pine cones, me for mushrooms, and Molly the Beagle for kangaroo poo to roll in (ahhhh the life of a dog truly is beautiful).
And find we did. It was quite a good haul yesterday so in the afternoon I decided to make an autumn mushroom risotto to use them all up as quickly as possible.
It was gooooooood.
** Now of course you should only go looking for wild mushrooms if you know what you’re doing and you’re 100% sure of what you’re eating. Otherwise LEAVE IT ALONE. If you’re interested in doing a tour, Whole Larder Love is doing one in June and theres one running down on the Mornington Peninsular as well
AUTUMN BOUNTY MUSHROOM RISOTTO
2 cups aborio rice
4 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup dry white wine
2 celery sticks finely chopped
1 onion finely chopped
2 cloves garlic finely chopped
approx 500-700g gram of mixed mushrooms. I used saffron milk caps, dried porcini mushrooms and your stanard button mushroom variety, roughly sliced and diced however you like them
handful fresh thyme and parsley finely chopped
freshly grated pecorino cheese
extra virgin olive oil
Heat some extra virgin olive oil on medium in a non stick heavy based pan. Add your onion and celery and saute on medium for 5 minutes. Add one clove of garlic.
Heat your kettle and once boiled pour 1 cup of boiling water over your dried porcini mushrooms (if using them). Put to one side.
In a separate fry pan heat a glug of olive oil over medium heat and add your mix mushrooms. Saute on medium until cooked. Add fresh thyme, salt and pepper and set aside. After 5 minutes of soaking, drain your porcini mushrooms and add to mix. Keep your porcini water as you’ll want to add this to the risotto later for its amazing mushroomy taste!
Back to your main pot now, add your aborio rice and stir for 5 minutes until slightly translucent. Add wine and cook til absorbed.
Add your stock to a small saucepan and keep to the side on a low heat. Add one ladle of stock at a time to your risotto and stir til completely absorbed. Repeat until there is no stock left.
Grab a spoon and taste your ristotto. Taste for seasoning but also to check if the rice is fully cooked. You still want a *slight* crunch to your rice. Finally add your porcini juices and give the old girl one more stir. Add your mushrooms to the risotto and give it another good stir.
Finish with your freshly chopped parsley and serve with grated pecorino cheese on top.
Have you been mushrooming this autumn? Or even better have you been growing mushrooms at home?
I LOVE mushrooms, so if youve got a fav recipe do share!