Indulge in the ultimate comfort with our Porcini Risotto recipe. Earthy porcini mushrooms delicately blended with creamy Arborio rice creating a luxurious, flavorful delight. Perfect for a cozy evening, this dish is pure culinary bliss!
If there is a traditional fall risotto in Italy, it’s this beloved risotto ai funghi made with those exquisite porcini mushrooms. These giant mushrooms bring nature into your plate; if you are lucky enough to get it in whatever form possible (fresh, canned or dried), you’ll never go back to button mushrooms. This Porcini Risotto showcases these mushrooms at its best!
Porcini mushrooms, also known as cèpes, steinpilz, or king bolete, are highly valued for their rich, earthy flavour and meaty texture. Found in forests across Europe, North America, and Asia, these wild mushrooms are a popular choice in many cuisines, especially Italian and French. They add depth to soups, sauces, and risottos, enhancing the overall taste with their distinct nutty aroma and umami goodness. For food enthusiasts, porcini mushrooms are a prized ingredient, like the caviar of mushrooms.
For this particular recipe, I’ve used a pack of medium-sized dried porcini I bought in Italy. This way, I’ll soak the dried mushrooms for about 20-30 minutes before using them and collect the leftover water/mushroom broth to make the risotto. This earthy water might have residual sand from the mushroom in it, so once the mushrooms soften, take them out and pass the leftover water through a meshed sieve with a paper towel or cheesecloth in it.
This broth can be slightly altered while heated by adding a laurel leaf, extra broth, wine, brandy, thyme or any aromatic you’d like. I’ve used some extra white wine and laurel leaf to keep as much of the mushroom taste intact as possible.
To get your risotto right, you’ll need to keep stirring the rice and adding the broth gradually. This way, the starch gets released from the rice and helps make the risotto creamy. So whether you mix the risotto with a wooden spoon or shake the pan, make sure it’s moving. To upgrade the risotto to adulthood level, add a sip of wine at the end of cooking.
Also, in the final step of the dish, if possible, add a truffled olive oil or salt to compliment the porcini and give it this extra flavour boost. Those two last ingredients aren’t necessary; they’re just a welcomed extra.
The Right Pan
To prevent your risotto from burning, use a thick bottom skillet, pan or casserole. Remember that the larger the pan, the more the water evaporates and creates the perfect consistency. But simultaneously, you need a certain height for your pan to receive all that broth.
The Perfect Consistency
When you are almost done with your Porcini Risotto, make sure to make it wet enough to absorb some more liquid in the minutes it will take to serve. If you want it creamy on the plate, make it looser and more liquid in the pan, if you get the idea…
If you want to make a contrasting fun texture of porcini mushrooms on top of your velvety Porcini Risotto to kick it up a notch, try air frying or deep-frying a fresh porcini! The mushroom chips on top will make your dish stand out! Check this recipe to learn how to Air fry your mushrooms into succulent healthy chips!
If you do not have Porcini mushrooms, you can substitute them with Shiitake mushrooms. Their size is different, but the taste is similar.
If you have leftovers, you can transform them the next day or two into Arancini, which are stuffed rice fritters. Whether fill them with tender meat, cheese or mushrooms! Check out Arancini recipe from fellow food bloggers:
Other Rice Meals
- 750 ml warm water
- 200 g dried porcini mushrooms (750g fresh porcini mushrooms)
- 250 g Arborio rice (or Carnaroli rice (round grain))
- 1 onion (finely chopped)
- 1 garlic clove (finely chopped)
- 200 ml white wine
- 100 g parmigiano reggiano
- 20 g olive oil
- 1 tbsp truffle oil (or truffle salt *optional)
- 1 bay leaf
- parsley (finely chopped)
- salt and pepper
- Start by soaking the dried porcini mushrooms in warm water for 25-30 minutes or until soft (if you use the dried porcini).
- Reserve the porcini mushroom water, filter it with a paper towel or cheesecloth through a meshed sieve, and add it to a saucepan or pot.
- Add the bay leaf and half the white wine into the mushroom water and simmer for 5 minutes.
- In a big skillet or pan, at medium-high heat, let soften the onions for 5 minutes or until soft.
- Add the garlic and cook for another minute.
- Make a well in the center of the pan and add a bit of olive oil in it. Add the rice and mix well, medium-high heat, until the grains become translucid (about 1-2 minutes).
- Add the other half of white wine and let the liquid get absorbed by the rice
- Add a ladleful of mushroom broth (or chicken broth) at the time, stir constantly.
- Keep the risotto in movement for about 20 minutes or until the grains are cooked.
- Once done, the consistency of the risotto should still be pretty wet, like rice pudding.
- Add the truffle olive oil, chopped flat leave parsley and the parmesan, mix check if more salt and pepper is needed and serve.