We cannot get enough of this porcini risotto. This vegetarian dish is perfect for a cold, winter’s evening, or for some indulgence on a summer’s night.

    Porcini risotto

    Serves: 4
    Cooking Time: 25 mins


    • 100g dried porcini mushrooms
    • 250ml (1 cup) boiling water
    • 60ml (¼ cup) olive oil
    • 1 onion, finely chopped
    • 500ml (2 cups) arborio rice
    • 125ml (½ cup) dry white wine
    • 1L (4 cups) hot vegetable stock
    • 30g (3 tbsp) unsalted butter
    • 125ml (½ cup) Parmesan, freshly grated
    • salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
    • 150g fresh porcini mushrooms, thinly sliced
    • mascarpone, to serve
    • fresh chives, snipped, to serve



    Place the dried porcini mushrooms in a large bowl and cover with boiling water. Allow the mushrooms to reconstitute for 10 minutes, remove the mushrooms from the liquid and set aside, reserving the porcini stock.


    Heat 45ml (3 tbsp) of the olive oil in a large non-stick frying pan and add the onion. Fry until transparent, about 2 minutes. Add the rice and coat with the oil. Add the wine to the pan and allow the alcohol to cook off while stirring.


    Lower the heat to medium and add 3 ladles of warm stock to the rice while stirring. When the stock has been absorbed, slowly add one more ladle of stock at a time, stirring well after each addition until the liquid is absorbed. When the vegetable stock is finished, add the reserved porcini stock to the rice, stirring well. Cook the rice for about 15 minutes.


    The rice should be cooked but al dente. Add the butter, Parmesan and season.


    Heat the remaining oil in a separate pan over high heat. Fry the fresh porcini mushrooms until they are golden and slightly crisp and set aside.


    To serve, spoon into warm bowls, add a dollop of mascarpone, scatter with the fried porcini mushrooms and sprinkle with the chives.


    TO DRINK: Good Pinot Noirs with a bit of age have earthy, truffle notes that pair beautifully with mushroom dishes.