A vegetarian variation of the chicken & pumpkin baked risotto, this is even faster and easier, elevating it from “One Pot Wonder” to “Emergency Meal” status, as you can have this in the oven in under 10 minutes from the time you began prep. Porcini mushrooms are amazing – they have so much earthy, rich flavour. Its a great idea to always keep a packet in your pantry.
1 cup Arborio rice
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 bay leaf
15 g packet porcini mushrooms (from delis, continental grocers, etc)
200 ml chicken or veg stock
150 ml boiled water
1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
About a tablespoon picked fresh thyme leaves
Salt & pepper
About a dessertspoon of butter
Put the mushrooms in a small bowl or jug and pour over the boiled water. Cover and leave to reconstitute for 5-10 minutes. Put the rice, garlic, and bay leaf in a baking dish. Drain the mushroom and reserve the water they were soaking in – this is full of flavour and must not be wasted. Chop the mushrooms roughly and add to the baking dish. Pour over the mushroom water and stock, and dot with the butter. Cover and bake for about 25 minutes, checking and stirring around at least once throughout and adding more stock or water if necessary. Remove, and stir through the thyme and parmesan.