Saturday, July 2, 2011

Mussels and mushroom Risotto

Doesn't it always figure that you make some of your best meals when nobody is around to try them? Since I had to work in the city this weekend, Hoag headed to the hills without me and I decided to try to replicate a mussels recipe that we had in Honfluer, France a few months ago. It was a mix between Mussels Mariniere and Mussels with Fennel but it was pure heaven! This is really a recipe for 2 even though I ate all the mussels by myself!

But first! I had a huge bag of mushrooms that I needed to get through! So I decided to make Mushroom Risotto to accompany my Mussels. Risotto is a little more time consuming than most like to fuss with but I find that if you have a nice glass of wine, it becomes a little less laborious :)

First start with some butter and shallots in your pan. You'll want to toast your Risotto a little before adding the liquid . I used 3/4 cup risotto. While thats going, warm up 3 cups chicken stock. You're going to add the warm chicken stock by the spoonful so you may end up with a little more than necessary.

Try not to push the process by adding more liquid before the first spoonfuls are absorbed, you'll end up with undercooked rice instead of the creamy delicousness you get when you take your time... just have more wine!! I added the mushrooms in the beginning just to get the flavor all the way through.

While thats working you can start prepping your Mussels. Make sure they're scrubbed on the outside. Disgard any that don't close after a good thump with a spoon. They are alive so they should react.

Add a couple good glugs of Olive Oil and warm. Add 3 cloves or garlic chopped, 1/2 fennel bubl chopped and 1 shallot chopped.

Saute for a few minutes and then add 1 cup of good white wine and a big splash of chicken stock and 1/2 chopped big tomato. Reduce this by half and then add 1/4 cup of cream.... and while you're at it.. add some cream to the risotto, mmmmm cream.

Once thats all mixed together and some chopped basil, the mussels, S&P and cover for a few minutes. ** All the mussels should open so discard any that dont after 4-5 minutes of cooking**

Put mussels in a bowl with all the delicious juices that you'll want to dip your crusty bread in once you're done! Once your risotto is nice and creamy, add a little parmesean cheese, some sage for a little kick and serve it up! I made a salad caprese for a nice refreshing taste as well.

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