Thursday 8 March 2012

Mushroom Risotto with special salads

One day recently Jane made us a Mushroom risotto, an old favourite of ours.

Nice as it was, on this occasion it was not actually The Main Event. The salads that we had with it stole the limelight.

First up, a really refreshing and "zingy" salad made of Chinese Leaves, Fennel, Oranges and Land Cress.

This was truly a special salad. Soft leaves, crunchy fennel, peppery cress and sweet and juicy oranges. A brilliant combination of tastes and textures.

Salad No.2 was a remoulade made of Celeriac, Carrots and Red Cabbage, bound together with a mayonnaise into which a good dollop of Dijon mustard had been stirred, along with a generous squeeze of fresh lemon juice. [For those of you who don't already know this, a remoulade is basically pretty similar to a slaw, as in "Coleslaw".]

This is another great combination. The vegetables are all raw and therefore still crunchy [Tip: using a food-processor to shred them saves a huge amount of time], and the soft, tangy creamy mayonnaise complements them extremely well. Celeriac is one of our favourite vegetables these days; I'd probably eat it every day, given the chance!

So do you see what I mean? Nice risotto, but fabulous salads!

Serving suggestion: serve with home-made crusty bread, and a bottle of decent Italian wine...

Note on photography. In common with almost all the photos of food that I take, these were not staged. My photos are of food that we actually eat, which is why they are sometimes not artistically composed. In fact I often take pictures of a meal that I had never intended to photograph. It's just that when I see the dish I sometimes think "Wow, that deserves a photo. Quick, where's my camera?" and I snap off a few shots before tucking in. Jane has learned to live with this now (I think).


  1. The zingy salad looks fantastic! What type of dressing did you use?

  2. Tanya; with this one we had a straightforward vinaigrette - just oil and vinegar and a little salt.

  3. I loved the look of the first salad - I would just have had that minus the risotto.

  4. HI Mark, just wondering if your camera has white balance and if you change it at all when you are doing the indoor images. The images are very yellow, that would be because of the tungsten lighting. I could be preaching to the choir here, but thought I would offer some advice.

  5. Hi dirtandflowers; Thanks for your input. I've looked again at these photos, and they don't look yellow to me. Maybe it's a feature of your computer? I have compared the photos on my laptop, my wife's desktop PC and her iPad and they look completely different on all three!

    1. I didn't mean to offend you, I was just trying to help. I've noticed it before. I'm a photographer, and I know my monitor is OK. You can often tell they were taken with indoor lights on. But hey, if you think they are OK, then they are OK, I won't try to help again.

  6. Yum! You have succeeded in making me very hungry for one of those nice salalds!

  7. They all look great and I am hungry too! I do love mushrooms too.

  8. Good I've just planted some celeriac and will be looking for recipes. And I love mushroom risotto. Is that little bit of red I see chilli or sun dried tomato?

  9. Mushroom risotto is a favourite of mine too.
    That 'zingy' salad looks like a piece of art with the beautiful colours.
    So crisp and healthy too.

    I had to laugh about you photographing your meals because I often do that and my boys go crazy! Hey...they don't blog so what do they know?
    Have a great weekend :D

  10. I'll pass on the risotto but definitely want to eat the salads, they look delicious.

  11. Both salads looks delicious. I love celeriac and fennel, and cabbages, well, I love all vegetables! :) Perfect meal!

  12. Mushroom risotto is one of my favourite!


  13. Hope we manage to get some celeriac this year. I know what you mean about snapping food quickly especially if it is hot. I read of John Torode complaining that most of the food he tasted on master Chef was cold after it had been filmed form various angles.

  14. The salads look delicious, I really need to be more adventurous with my own salads.

  15. I generally find taking photos of prepared food a challenge. You seem to take quite good photos.

  16. What an absolutely glorious recipe and fabulous sunny photos too...most of my photos are un-staged, some are, cakes and cold items, but hot stuff (if you see what I mean!) are quickly snapped and posted!


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