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Oct 24, 2011 06:47 PM

Fresh Chanterelle Risotto--to what point would you prepare ahead?

I've searched "mushroom risotto" and found a lot of threads, none of which address this question. Anyone have words of wisdom/experience on this? I've found risotto reheats fine once, and makes fairly decent arancini the third time, if there is that much leftover. But, I've not done this with a fresh mushroom risotto. Thoughts?

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  1. I've never thought of risotto as something that "reheats fine once" unless it was just me wanting to eat the leftovers zapped in the microwave. I've never prepared risotto ahead though I know restaurants to the half-way-then-spread-on-a-sheet-pan-to-finish-later approach. Maybe I'm not quite clear on what you are asking.

    1. amyzan, i love chanterelle risotto. for our purposes, it works fine to prepare it completely in advance and nuke to reheat. we also freeze it in 2 serving portions, defrost and reheat in microwave. if you're doing it for a dinner party, you could cook it halfway or 3/4 and turn it off, then finish it while people are being seated.

      1. I would prepare the mushrooms ahead of time, but not the risotto itself. In fact, I get very large amounts of chanterelles when I can and clean them, roast them briefly, and freeze them so I can have them all year. So often I will be working with those mushrooms. I add them to the risotto just before it's finished. Of course if you have fresh chanterelles, you can saute them briefly while the risotto cooks.

        I will reheat leftover risotto, by adding a little stock and heating it gently. Still good--but never as good as freshly made, imo.

        2 Replies
        1. re: nomadchowwoman

          hi nomad, a few questions- why roast rather than sautee?i feel that the silkyness of the chanterelles is complemented by sauteeing, and it also brings out the juices as part of the flavor package, which i would think preferable to drying up the juices, which happens when you roast. ?

          also, i add my chanterelles in partway through the risotto cooking so as to impart more flavor into the dish.But maybe you like your chanterelles crunchy?

          Adding stock would appear dangerous to overcooking ; have you tried a quick nuke?

          Sounds like you live near chanterelle land?are they your fav wild mushroom? they are mine.

          1. re: opinionatedchef

            I love all mushrooms, but I'm nuts for chanterelles. Sometimes I can get them from local sources, but when I can't, I have them shipped overnight. I have to buy 10 lbs. to avoid the hefty shipping charges (which is why I end up having so many to deal with at one time--hence, the roasting and freezing). I roast them simply because I can do a whole lot at once. I toss them w/olive oil and put them in the oven for 10- 12 minutes until they are just barely cooked. They don't dry out and do give off juices during that brief roast, and then I freeze them and their juices in packets for future use, which often involves a quick saute before adding them to risotto or pasta, etc.

            If I'm dealing with fresh chanterelles to make something immediately, I do saute them.

            I wouldn't say I like my chanterelles "crunchy," but I do like them to have some bite to them.

            I do sometimes nuke leftover risotto, but add stock if I'm trying to re-capture some of the looseness of the dish. Neither is perfect; in my experience, there's nothing like the just made dish: the leftovers are always different--still good (and no way am I throwing away the leftovers). Leftover risotto, nuked, with a fried egg on top makes a great breakfast.

        2. If you want to cook and hold for a dinner party, I would cook the risotto, without adding the mushrooms, about 2/3 of the way. You can pull it out and spread it out on a sheet tray and refrigerate- from there you can add anything you want and finish it to serve (takes about 10 minutes or so).

          If you are looking for leftovers, just make sure you cool the finished product appropriately (on a sheet tray and then scooped into containers after it has cooled) and you should be fine.

          Under done risotto is pretty forgiving in terms of cooling and heating back up, but once you reach the point where the risotto is done, it is pretty unforgiving.

          For chanterelles, I would saute bacon and saute the chanterelles in the bacon fat and add at the very end of the risotto cooking.

          1. i would just make sure if you are cooking the chanterelles a few days in advance that its not called "fresh chanterelle risotto" haha. however, "chanterelle cooked a few days ago risotto" doesnt quite have the same ring...

            anyways, id do whats mentioned above and cook 2/3s the way, spread on a sheet tray, and then finish when ready