Stacy Ventura

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Root Vegetable Risotto Without Rice

David Kinch, Manresa, Los Gatos, California / September 2011

For 8 servings

• 1 cup carnaroli rice
• canola oil (for frying)
• 1/2 cup king trumpet royale mushrooms, very thinly sliced
• salt
• 1 1/2 cups whole milk
• 2 1/4 oz. Parmesan, cut into small chunks (rind included), plus 2 Tbsps. finely grated
• 1 1/2 tsps. soy lecithin
• 1 Tbsp. unsalted butter
• 1 lb. turnips, diced to the size of cooked grain of rice
• 1 lb. celery root, diced to the size of cooked grain of rice
• 1 lb. rutabaga, diced to the size of cooked grain of rice

  1. Bring 5 cups water and rice to a boil in large pot set over medium heat; reduce heat to medium-low; simmer, stirring occasionally, 25 minutes; remove from heat; let stand 5 minutes.

  2. Strain through fine sieve into large bowl, extracting as much liquid as possible without pressing down on rice; reserve rice for another use; reserve liquid separately.

  3. Heat oil in large pot to 300°F; add mushrooms; cook until brown and crispy; remove with a spider; place on paper towels to drain; season; reserve.

  4. Place milk and cheese chunks in another pot set over low heat; cook until instant-read thermometer registers 176°F; remove from heat; cover with plastic wrap; cool; strain through fine chinois into clean bowl, pressing down on cheese to release all liquid; discard cheese.

  5. Place milk in a blender; with motor running, gradually add soy lecithin; blend until incorporated; strain through fine chinois into clean bowl; season; reserve.

  6. Heat butter in large sauté pan set over medium heat; add vegetables; cook, stirring occasionally, until edges of vegetables have softened; add enough rice water to cover vegetables; bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium; cook, stirring constantly, until mixture starts to thicken (be careful not to break up vegetables); add more liquid to cover; cook, adding small amounts of liquid as needed, until mixture is al dente; stir in just enough rice water to keep mixture liquid; fold in grated cheese; season; remove from heat; reserve (keep warm).

  7. To serve, blend cheese milk with hand blender until foamy; place a 4" ring mold in center of each plate; spoon some risotto into each mold to make a thin layer; spoon small amount of Parmesan milk over risotto; garnish with reserved mushroom chips.

What to drink: Fratelli Brovia Roero Arneis 2008 or Yalumba Viognier Eden Valley The Virgilius 2009