Porcini risotto

Good quality porcini mushrooms, celery, thyme and a touch of garlic is pretty much all it takes to create Theo Randall's quality risotto
By Theo Randall
Porcini risotto
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes plus soaking
  • Effort: easy


  • 25 g dried porcini, mushrooms
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 stick celery, finely chopped
  • 1 sprig of thyme, leaves removed
  • 1 clove garlic, finely sliced
  • 200 g Carnaroli rice
  • 75 ml vermouth, approximate quantity
  • 1 litres hot chicken stock
  • squeeze lemons

To finish

  • 75 g unsalted butter
  • small handful flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • 75 g freshly grated parmesan

Tips and Suggestions

Theo prefers carnaroli rice to arborio rice because the grains hold their shape better.


1. Soak the mushrooms for 20 minutes in enough hot water to cover. Drain, reserving any liquid.

2. Heat 2 tablespoon of oil in a large casserole pan and fry the onion and celery until softened. Add the rice to the pan and cook for 5 minutes, stirring until the grains are coated in oil and beginning to turn translucent.

3. Meanwhile, heat a large frying pan with the remaining olive oil and fry the mushrooms along with the thyme and garlic for about 10 minutes over a medium heat, gradually adding the porcini soaking liquid as they cook down and the water evaporates. When done, chop the contents of the pan and set aside.

4. Pour the vermouth over the rice and cook down until all the alcohol has been absorbed, stirring continuously. Youll notice the starch start to com out of the rice. Add a ladleful of hot stock.

5. Keep stirring, adding the stock by ladlefuls, until it has all been absorbed. Once the rice is cooked al dente (tender but still with a slight bite), turn the heat up for the last minute of cooking. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper.

6. To finish, stir in the chopped mushrooms, sharpen with a squeeze of lemon and add the butter, chopped parsley and parmesan cheese. If the rice looks a tad dry, moisten with a dash more stock.

7. Turn off the heat, cover the pan with a lid, and leave the risotto to sit for a few minutes.

8. Re-season and serve sprinkled with extra cheese.

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