Here we are my friends! Mere hours before Christmas day and as usual, the ups and downs of excitement and stress are here today and gone tomorrow and that’s just how it goes. Are you doing anything special for Christmas Eve? I tweaked our menu a bit after visiting D’Angelo Brothers in the Italian Market and splurging on Wild Boar Prosciutto, Pheasant Pate and duck breasts for our main dish. I am very, very excited.
We had a good balance of lounging and walking and discovering new places this weekend. We ended up at the most hipster craft show you ever did see on Saturday in Old (with an “e”) Kensington- Complete with Christmas cards featuring images of Jesus on the front with a birthday hat on his head, earrings made of lacquered fruit and lots of free beer. It was ridiculous and a sight to be seen and I’m glad we went. After, we crossed the street and found ourselves at the Philly Homebrew Outlet that is perhaps the coolest place I’ve been as of late. As soon as you walk in they offer you homemade beer and wine and are just about the nicest guys ever. They even tipped us off to a co-op type thing where for a flat fee and about 3 full days of your time, you participate in wine-making (from grape to bottle) down the road and end up with cases and cases of wine. Would you do it?
Sunday night we settled in, roasted some chestnuts (sort of successfully) finished wrapping a couple presents (me) and reading (him), and made this risotto. After you get the concept of continuous stirring and adding liquid bit by bit, it’s really rather easy. What’s better, you can add in pretty much anything and it’s going to be delicious. Sort of like a grown up, wheat-free mac and cheese.
You will need:
1 onion, diced
1 12 oz container mushrooms, chopped into small pieces
1 T olive oil
2 T butter
2 c. Arborio rice (short grain white)
2 1/2-3 qt. vegetable stock
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 c shredded Parmesan cheese (plus more for serving).
Pour stock in a saucepan and keep warm over low heat.
Heat (another) large saucepan over medium heat. Add olive oil, butter and onion and cook until golden, about 10 minutes. Add mushrooms, toss and cook until soft and moisture is mostly evaporated, about 10 minutes more. Add rice and stir to combine.
Working 1/2 cup at a time, add stock to rice mixture and stir until absorbed. Continue until rice is cooked through, testing after 2qt, approximate 25 minutes. Once done, remove from heat, stir in cheese and season with salt and pepper. To serve, add a bit of Parmesan cheese on top.