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Risotto Isn’t so Scary After All.

I have a love/hate relationship with risotto.  I think I have had equally both terrible versions and delicious versions of this dish.  But the inconsistency it the scary part.  I hesitate to order risotto at restaurants.  All anyone says is how hard it is to make.  All that stirring, stirring, stirring.  Blah, blah, blah...

All of this discontent around the super stirred rice, all the fear of the gluey, gloppy starch or the burnt bottoms, has let me to NEVER try to make risotto.

Until one day this month.  I tried it.  I met my fear head on and entered into the vast unknown.

And the result was a smashingly yummy, creamy, light, smooth, earthy pot of risotto that I will remember all the days of my life.  Well, I doubt that, but it was pretty damn good if I say so myself.  I made this with scallops, but it can pair with any protein or be savored on its own.

Hope you like it.  Don’t be scared. :-0

No Fear Mushroom Risotto with Scallops (Serves 2)


  • 5 Cups Chicken Broth
  • 2 Cloves Garlic
  • 1 Shallot or Small White Onion
  • 3/4 C Arborio Rice
  • 1 C Button Mushrooms
  • 1 Lemon
  • 1/4 C Parsley
  • 8 Oz Sea Scallops
  • 1/4 C Parmesan Cheese
  • 5 tsp Truffle Oil 
  • 4 t EVOO 
  • 3 T Butter 

  1. Bring the chicken broth to a boil in a medium pot.  Once boiling, reduce heat to low.  
  2. Slice garlic thinly.
  3. Peel and finely mince shallot or onion.
  4. Heat a drizzle of olive oil in large pan over medium heat.  Add shallot (or onion) and garlic.  Cook, until softened, about 2 minutes.
  5. Add the rice to the pan and stir until translucent, about 2 minutes.   
  6. Add the broth to the pan 1/2 C at a time, stirring after each addition.  Allow broth to absorb most of the stock before adding more.  This whole process (10 times!) will take about 30-35 minutes for all liquid to be added, absorbed by the rice, and for the rice to become creamy.
  7. Meanwhile, trim mushrooms, then cut into 1/4 inch thick slices.  
  8. Zest the lemon until you have about 1 tsp of zest, then cut the lemon into quarter wedges.  Roughly chop parsley leaves and set aside.
  9. Heat a drizzle of olive oil in another pan over medium-high heat.  Add mushrooms and season with salt and pepper.  Cook, tossing, until crisp and browned, about 4-7 minutes.  Remove mushrooms from pan and set aside.
  10. Wipe out same pan and heat a drizzle of olive oil over medium high heat.  Pat scallops dry with a paper towel and season with salt and pepper.  Add to pan and cook until browned and just firm, 3-5 mins per side.  Remove from pan and set on a plate, covered.  
  11. Wipe out same pan again and place over medium heat.
  12. Melt 2 T butter in pan.  Stir until butter starts to brown, about 3 minutes.  Stir in half of the parsley and a squeeze of lemon juice.  Remove from pan and put into small bowl.
  13. When risotto is al dente (see step 6), stir in the mushrooms, lemon zest, Parmesan, 1 T truffle oil, 1 T butter and a squeeze of lemon juice.
  14. Season risotto with salt, pepper, and a bit more lemon juice to taste.  Divide between 2 bowls and top with scallops.  Drizzle with the browned butter and a sprinkle of truffle oil.  Garnish with remaining parsley.

Mushroom  Risotto with Scallops