mushrooms

Tomato and Mushroom Risotto

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I don’t often make risotto – simply because it’s a dish that requires your constant attention (and when you have a 2.5 year old tama/mokonui/taika/makimaki/dance-party enthusiast, you don’t really have that luxury…)

But this is a pretty easy and tasty one – I served this with a salad made of beetroot leaves, cucumber, tomato, and some toasted pumpkin and sunflower seeds.

Also one thing I do so that I don’t need to buy stock or stock powder, and try to minimise waste, is I keep the bits and pieces of veggies I don’t use in cooking (the ends of carrots, silverbeet and kale stalks, ends of spring onions etc) and boil them up for stock.  Add in some peppercorns, a couple of bay leaves, some garlic, and whatever herbs you have – coriander seeds, some parsley and thyme etc, bring to the boil for a while, and then freeze it.  You can also blend up some veggies to thicken it if you want.  I defrosted some of this to use in the recipe below.

The recipe also states fresh herbs (which are best) but you can substitute dry ones.

Kīnaki (serves 4)

  • 6 cups of vegetable stock
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup chopped sundried tomatoes (optional)
  • 8 white button mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh thyme
  • Handful of chopped fresh basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons of nutritional yeast (optional – just gives it an extra bit of savoury flavour)
  • Olive oil
  • Cracked black pepper, fresh basil to serve (optional)

Huarahi

Bring the vegetable stock to a simmer in a medium-sized pot.  Stir in the tomato paste.  Cover and keep warm over very low heat.

Heat some olive oil in a large pan.  Fry the onions and garlic until brown.  Add the sundried tomatoes, mushrooms, herbs, nutmeg and salt and cook for a few minutes.

Add the rice and stir constantly – it’ll start to change colour a little bit (turning more white).  After a couple of minutes, add the first cup of broth and stir often until the liquid is absorbed.

Keep cooking and and stirring, adding more broth by cupfuls, until the rice is tender and creamy and all the liquid has been absorbed.  If the rice isn’t tender yet but you have used up all the stock, keep adding water in the same way until the rice is cooked through.

Stir in the nutritional yeast and season with salt and cracked black pepper

Spoon onto plates and serve with fresh basil, vegetables or a salad.

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Creamy Mushroom Pasta

pasta

This is a really easy and tasty dish – the fresh herbs really make it but if you don’t grow your own they can be a bit expensive.  It’s fine to use dry ones, or leave them out.  Just add some extra seasoning (either the nutritional yeast, and some salt and pepper, perhaps even a sprinkle of paprika or smoked paprika to liven it up a bit).  You could possibly use the sauce with the courgette-noodle-not-pasta that a lot of people are into at the moment (see instructions here).

Kīnaki (Serves 4)

  • 4 x cloves of garlic finely chopped (or 3 teaspoons of crushed garlic)
  • 10 or so white button mushrooms thinly sliced
  • 1 x medium-sized onion finely chopped
  • A handful of fresh thyme
  • A handful of fresh parsley
  • 1 x can of coconut cream
  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast flakes
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil (or 2 tablespoons of veggie stock for frying the garlic/mushrooms)
  • Dried fettuccine pasta
  • Salt and pepper to season

Huarahi

Bring a pot of water to the boil for the pasta.  Add a pinch of salt, a dash of olive oil and then cook the pasta according to the directions on the packet.  Make sure you stir it occasionally so all of the strands stay separate.

In a large pan, add the olive oil or stock (reserve a little of this for later) and the onion and cook until brown.  Next add the sliced mushrooms and the fresh herbs.  Cook these for a few minutes until the mushrooms are tender.  Take these off the heat and put them on a plate to add to the sauce later.

Return the pan to the stove and add a little more olive oil or stock.  Cook the garlic for a few minutes.  Next add the can of coconut milk and stir.  Once this has started to thicken a little, add the nutritional yeast and some salt and pepper to taste.  You may find the sauce thickens up fine on its own.  If not, you can add some cornflour or arrowroot to thicken the sauce.  If you get a few lumps try and whisk these out (or cheat like me and use a stick blender.)

Finally add the mushrooms and herbs to the sauce.  When the pasta is cooked, drain it and add this to the sauce.  Stir to coat the pasta with the sauce and then serve.  Sprinkle with some freshly chopped parsley, some salt and pepper, and a little nutritional yeast.