Sunday 23 February 2014

Chicken with mushroom "risotto"

If you're looking for a recipe for Mushroom Risotto, this is not the place! (Well, certainly not for the purist). My dish includes rice cooked using the risotto method, but it does not claim to be a perfect example of the genre.

Well, now that we've cleared that up, let me tell you about this dish I made yesterday. It consisted of rice and mushrooms cooked like a risotto, along with chicken breasts fried in butter, and served with broccoli and carrots.

Does that look nice, or what?  Here's the recipe:-

"Pan-fried Chicken breasts with Mushroom Risotto"

Ingredients (serves 2)
2 chicken breasts, preferably with skin left on
180g risotto rice (I used Arborio)
200g mushrooms, sliced (I used Chestnut mushrooms, but use whatever you like / have)
1 onion, peeled and finely diced
1 large clove garlic, peeled and crushed
Approx 1 litre chicken or vegetable stock
Approx 1 Tbsp fresh thyme leaves
Juice of half a lemon
25g butter
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Vegetables to accompany - according to preference (I used carrots and broccoli - mainly to add lots of colour to what would otherwise be a very brown-coloured dish!)

Heat the stock in a small saucepan, until nearly boiling
Using 1 Tbsp oil, fry the onion gently in a large heavy pan
When the onion is translucent but not brown, add the crushed garlic and cook for 1 more minute, stirring to avoid burning
Add the rice and stir thoroughly into the oily onions to ensure it is well coated
Fry for a minute or so, being careful not to let the rice go brown
Add a ladleful of hot stock and stir until the rice has absorbed it
Add another ladleful of hot stock - ditto
Keep adding stock a little at a time, and stirring frequently

To cook the risotto will probably take about 45 minutes all told, so after about 20 / 25 minutes, start frying your chicken. The chicken breasts I used were very big and thick so I wanted to give them time to cook all the way through. In restrospect it might have been better to halve them.

Frying chicken probably doesn't need much explanation, but for what it's worth, I fried mine in butter with some oil added to stop it burning. I browned the meat (skin side first) over a high heat and then turned the heat down to cook the meat through. When you thik the chicken is cooked, test by piercing with a sharp knife. If the juices run clear you are OK, but if they are pink, cook for a bit longer.

Using the other 1 Tbsp oil in a frying-pan, fry the mushrooms
When they are cooked, add them to the rice pan, which by now will be starting to fill up with slowly swelling rice.

Add the Thyme leaves and salt and pepper to taste
Keep adding the stock until the rice has gone soft and creamy. Not too soft though - it needs to have some texture still. (Think "al dente" )
When you judge that the rice is done, squeeze the juice of half a lemon over it, turn off the heat, cover the pan and let it rest for about 5 minutes before serving. I placed the chicken on top of the risotto purely for presentational purposes.

When plated-up, add the vegatables...

Did you notice that I used our new cast-iron pan? We are using it so much that it barely ever gets put away!


  1. I did notice you were using the pan. I have pan envy. I have butter envy too. I'm not allowed to use anymore in my dinner cooking (hubbie's issue not mine).

  2. Must admit I always take the skin off our chicken - I don'r really like it but your dish looks lovely.

    1. Cooking the chicken with the skin on immproves the texture of the meat - makes it more succulent. We didn't actually eat the skin though.

  3. I'm not a lover of risotto, I think it's the texture that I don't like. Your chicken looks cooked to perfection though, I wouldn't turn my nose up at that.

  4. Looks very tasty indeed. I always think mushrooms add a great taste to meals. Something I've never thought about growing for some reason.

  5. Absolutely love risotto-looks yum! I'm glad you mentioned covering it at the end and leaving it for a little while, that's important for flavour and many people don't do that.

  6. Just the recipe I need, we are planning on having chicken & mushroom risotto in the week, my normal one has wine in the recipe & doesn't taste right without it. I shall try this one.

  7. Oh my word that looks tasty!
    It's a good job it's coming up for lunchtime ;D
    I now know what I'll be cooking for dinner tonight too so thanks for the inspiration.
    I also noticed the pan by the way and was tempted to purchase one too when I saw it in the shop. I really don't need another pan, but I does look idea for so many things...I'm thinking that I might have to revisit that decision!
    Enjoy your week :D


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