About Beth

Beth, along with her husband, Mike, is co-owner of two Italian Deli/Markets in St. Louis - Viviano’s Festa Italiano. When not creating yummy new menu items for the deli, she’s the pediatric research lab supervisor at Washington University School of Medicine. Read more out about Viviano’s Festa Italiano.

About Irene

Irene loves to think, read and dream about food. She enjoys cooking & eating in general. Although she demures about her talents, Irene has a finely-tuned palate that her friends envy. She bakes on occasion. The rest of the time she's creating memories with her family and friends. . . or she's learning a new needlecraft technique.

About Deborah

Deborah is a wife, mother, grandmother, traveler, bootlegger, and a very poor speller! As Victor Hazan so eloquently puts it, Deborah has chosen Umbria to be the home of her soul. When she can’t be there in body, she spends her free time cooking & reading about Italy. She blogs mostly about food and about trips – past and future – here: Old Shoes New Trip.

About Doug

Doug lives in Eastern Ontario in a farmhouse built in 1903. He is a retired teacher with four adult children, a wife, a son-in-law, two Irish step-grandchildren and one grandson who he is lucky to hang with a lot. He has way too many books. Doug also blogs at To Slow Time Down.

About Cindy

Cindy lives in Eagle River, Alaska where her freezer is always full of salmon, halibut & shrimp. Cindy participates in several regular cooking challenges. You can read more about her cooking and life in the last frontier on her blog, Baked Alaska.

About Sandi

Sandi is a true Southerner, but a traveler & Italian cook at heart. She lives in Alabama and knows more about fried green tomatoes than fricassees. Her family owned the WhistleStop Café for many years. Sandi also blogs at Whistlestop Cafe Cooking.

About Jan

Jan, a serious home cook, has owned “Essentials” since 1992. She is passionate about all things Italian, especially the cuisine & the language. Jan blogs about her travels (next trip Italy May/June of 2010) at: Keep your Feet in the Street.

About Jerry

Jerry is a food obsessed Canadian. He learned to love Italian food as a child while eating the meals prepared by his Napolitano uncle. He learned to cook Italian foods by watching his uncle cook these feasts for the family. This love of Italian food has been honed through serious personal experimentation in eating and cooking. Willing to try most anything once, Jerry isn't so sure about tripe! Jerry also blogs at Jerry's Thoughts, Musings, and Rants!

About Palma

Palma is a Marriage & Family Therapist in Palm Desert, CA. She’s an Italian-American with a passion for cooking, entertaining, & travel to Italy. She’s always planning her next culinary adventure to Italia on her blog, Palmabella's Passions

About Kim

Kim is our permanent sub and the image above gives you a good idea of the look on her face when she realized she was drafted. Kim loves to eat, drink, travel and cook - probably in that order. When she's not here, you can find her organizing and leading food, wine and beer tours in Europe as co-owner and operator of GrapeHops or blogging at What I Really Think.

« Risotto with Saffron, Milanese Style | Main | Risotto with Asparagus »

Risotto with Porcini Mushrooms

This was my first try at making risotto with porcinis. I don’t know why I haven’t tried it before, because we sell the dried porcinis at our store. I think I was afraid that the taste would be too heavy, but I was pleasantly surprised. This recipe was a wonderful mix of savory flavors that never over powered each other.


I prefer to use Carnaroli rice, which I find to be more forgiving than Arborio. When you are as busy as I am that is a nice trait for a rice to have. I can’t tell you how many times I have been pulled away while I am supposed to be stirring the risotto. I have never had a disaster using the Carnaroli rice, but with the Arborio I have.

This recipe has just a few ingredients. Butter, rice, onions, beef broth, parmigiano-reggiano, and the porcini mushrooms make up the list. Marcella’s directions are exquisite, from the details on rehydrating the mushrooms to the amounts of liquid to add and the timing on adding them.

This recipe is going into my keeper file because there is something very comforting about it. One thing that I am always looking for is recipe that makes me feel all warm and cozy inside. You would think that would be a bad thing for a 100 degree day, but it worked well for us today.

Comments (3)

This looks wonderful Beth!

I really like this recipe as well and I always have the ingredients at hand, since the rice and dried porcini are pantry staples at our house. I am a big fan of carnaroli rice and have not used arborio for a very long time. I think carnaroli produces a creamier result. My favorite brand is Ferron.

I'm going to have to change rice. I've always used aborio. But, now both Beth and Marcella are telling me that aarnaroli is better.

Marcella Hazan:

My dear Beth, your risotto could not look more authentic or more appetizing. Risotto coi Porcini is a classic of monumental stature, but I have another excellent mushroom risotto in Marcella Cucina, with almonds. I have never missed an opportunity in any of my cookbooks to put in a few risotto recipes. Arborio packaged in a little cloth bag was, for an exceedingly long period, the only risotto rice Americans ever saw in their stores. There is absolutely nothing wrong with it, it is just a little starchier, less fine than Carnaroli, which was developed much later. Vialone Nano is the favored rice in the Veneto, and it is eminently suitable for the runny risotto all'onda that Venetian cooks prefer. Some producers still offer a pre-industrial version of it, not as polished as the other rices. It is covered by a minute powdery residue that gives a risotto a distinctive plushy texture. Gustiamo imports a version by Gazzanti that I use occasionally. My favorite however is Aquerello's Carnaroli. aged one year before release. Elegantissimo!

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on July 25, 2010 8:03 AM.

The previous post in this blog was Risotto with Saffron, Milanese Style.

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