Wild mushroom risotto casserole
Risotto Casserole for a CrowdTraditional risotto is a challenge to make in large quantities and needs to be served promptly. This unconventional risotto casserole recipe is great for a crowd, serving 16 to 20 people, and can be prepared in advanced. No constant stirring required. It can be prepared early in the day, and then baked just before you are ready to serve. I have made this risotto casserole for many years and unfortunately could not recall where I originally got this recipe. Thank you to one of my reader's Amy, wrote in to tell me the original recipe is from The Silver Palate Good Times Cookbook, published in 1984. This version of the recipe serves about 1 1/2 times the original recipe as I use it to feed a crowd.
Really Good, but Probably Not Every Day FareThis method of cooking risotto is an indulgence, using cream, cheese, eggs and tons of butter. Don't serve it every night. Bring it out for a special occasion, when you have a good size crowd and you will find you have many fans. See my post on nutmeg and parmesan cheese before starting this risotto casserole recipe.
Special EquipmentYou will need a large 5-quart casserole or baking dish. Or you can use two smaller casseroles, or cut the recipe in half if you are not feeding a small crowd. If you have a food processor it will save you a lot of time preparing this recipe. Use it to chop your carrots, onions and garlic. If you have a slicing blade you can also use it to slice your mushrooms. You will need a bit of cheese cloth to drain the dried mushrooms. Alternatively you can use a coffee filter.
Dried MushroomsDried mushrooms can be expensive. Trader Joe's sells a reasonably priced mixed dried mushroom mix. You can use all fresh mushrooms if you wish, but the combination of dried and fresh will give you extra depth of flavor.
Wild mushroom risotto casserole
Yield 16 -20 servings
A no-stir risotto casserole that can be made in advance and for a large number of people. Make this when you are cooking for a crowd and want to prepare your meal before your guests arrive.
- 3 ounces dried porcini mushrooms
- 3/4 cup dry white wine
- 7 cups beef or vegetable stock
- 1.5 cups butter (no I'm not kidding) separated into two 3/4 cup portions
- 2 onions, chopped
- 3 carrots, peeled and finely chopped
- 3 cups arborio rice
- 6 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1.5 pounds mushrooms, sliced
- 2 red bell peppers, seeded and chopped
- 1 cup parsley, chopped
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 cups parmesan cheese, grated
- 1.5 cups whipping cream
- 3 eggs
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
- Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Soak dried mushrooms in wine for 30 minutes. Line a sieve with cheese cloth and strain the mushrooms through the cloth, reserving the strained liquid. Coarsely chop the reconstituted mushrooms and set aside.
- Melt half the butter in a large skillet. Add onions and carrots and sauté for about 10 minutes until soft. Add the rice to the pan and stir to coat thoroughly with butter and vegetables. Add reserved wine to the rice and stir until absorbed. Add enough stock to completely cover the rice. Cover and turn heat down to low until rice is al dente (firm but cooked) about 30 minutes. Add more stock if pan becomes too dry before rice is cooked.
- Melt the remaining butter in a second skillet and sauté the reconstituted dried mushrooms and the fresh mushrooms until soft, about 10 minutes. Add chopped peppers, garlic and parsley and cook uncovered on low for about 10 minutes until soft. Season with salt and pepper.
- Butter the inside of a 5-quart casserole dish. Spread half the rice on the bottom of the casserole. Top the rice with the sautéed mushrooms and peppers. Sprinkle half the grated parmesan cheese on top of the mushroom and pepper mixture. Spread the remaining rice on top of the mushroom, pepper mixture.
- minutes before you are ready to serve, whisk the eggs, cream and nutmeg together. Pour egg mixture over the casserole. Sprinkle the top of the casserole with the remaining parmesan cheese.
- Bake for 30 minutes until top is golden brown.