2 Fennel Fronds sliced thin, about 1/2 cup (this is the thick green stem of the fennel)
4 oz sliced baby bella Mushrooms
2 Tbs finely chopped Shallots
1 cup Arborio or Carnaroli Rice
1/2 cup Dry White Cooking Wine
2 cups heated Vegetable Stock
1 tsp Sea Salt
1 Tbs Lemon Zest
1 Tbs Lemon Juice
1 Tbs fresh Mint leaves julienned
2 Tbs softened grass fed salted Butter
1/4 cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
Preheat 2 Tbs EVOO in a medium saucepan over medium heat
When the oil is warm add Fennel and Mushrooms
Saute 1-2 minutes until softened and set aside in a bowl
In the same saucepan add 2 Tbs EVOO and Shallots
Saute 1 minute
Add Rice and stir for 1-2 minutes until toasted
Add White Wine and cook until Wine is reduced or evaporated
Add in 1/2 cup Vegetable Stock and stir (it’s important to keep stirring – see notes below)
When Vegetable Stock starts to get evaporated (after about 5 minutes), add another 1/2 cup of Vegetable Stock
Add in Salt and stir
Add 1/2 cup Vegetable Stock approximately every 5 minutes, stirring constantly (total cook time for the risotto is about 20 minutes)
Taste the rice and when you are 1 minute before reaching the right bite “al dente” (meaning rice should be tender but still firm to the bite), add sautéed Fennel, Mushrooms, Lemon Zest, Lemon Juice, Mint, Butter and Parmesan Cheese.
Turn off heat and stir quickly until creamy in texture.
Sprinkle a bit of Parmesan on top
Make sure your Vegetable Stock stays hot. It’s important to add a little bit of the hot Vegetable Stock at a time so the rice is cooked slowly and the stock gets absorbed. This method releases the rice’s starches, producing a velvety, creamy dish.
It’s very important to keep stirring the Risotto as it’s cooking, especially as the stock gets absorbed, to prevent scorching.
If you run out of Vegetable Stock and you find this is too dry at the end, you can add in a little hot water as a substitute.