Leek, Mushroom and Lemon Risotto

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Leek, Mushroom and Lemon Risotto. I served mine with roasted asparagus – NOMS.

This is LITERALLY one of my all-time favorite spring dishes! It is packed full of delicious springtime flavors, and is just the right amount of warming for cooler spring evenings. I’ve adapted this recipe from one of my favorite vegetarian cookbooks – but I have completely veganized it! My vegan version retains all the creaminess you commonly associate with risotto, without any dairy, eggs or gluten – wooohooo! Major crowd pleaser right here, folks. It is seriously soooo delicious, and includes one of my favorite veggie combinations – leeks and mushroom (mmmmm). It’s the perfect dish to whip up for a dinner party with your homies – it seems impressive, packs a flavorful punch but when you get down to brass tacks it’s just a really damn delicious one pot meal. YUM. Let all the spring sunshine in, here we go!

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Everything you need for Leek, Mushroom and Lemon Risotto – veggie broth, lemons, yellow onion, leeks, Arborio rice, Earth Balance, nutritional yeast, parsley, chives, your favorite kind of mushrooms.

Leek, Mushroom and Lemon Risotto

Ingredients

  • 2 leeks
  • 12 oz sliced baby portabella mushrooms
  • 8 oz sliced shiitake mushrooms
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4-6 Tbsp vegan margarine, like Earth Balance
  • 1 large onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 3/4 cup Arborio rice
  • 5 cups vegetable stock
  • Grated zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast*
  • ~1/2 cup mixed chopped fresh chives and flat leaf parsley
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Lemon wedges and sprigs of flat-leaf parsley to serve

*To un-veganize this recipe, just replace with 2/3 cup of Parmesan cheese.

Directions

Step One: Prep your veggies (check out my Leek Cleaning Tip here). Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan, add the garlic and saute for 1 minute, until it softens. Add your mushrooms and leeks and cook, stirring frequently, for about 10 minutes, or until they are softened and brown. Remove from heat and transfer to a large bowl.
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The mushrooms, leeks and garlic cooking up in my saucepan. I chose pre-sliced mushrooms out of pure time-saving laziness – I highly recommend you do the same πŸ˜‰ You can choose any mushrooms you like – I chose baby bellas and shiitake because they are my faves. Cremini mushrooms would be bomb here, too!

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Here are the cooked mushrooms and leeks after they’ve been transferred to a large bowl while you use the same pan to cook your rice. YUM. Try not to eat all of them while you’re waiting for your risotto to achieve perfection! πŸ™‚

Β Step Two: Add 2 Tbsp of Earth Balance to the pan and cook the onion over medium heat for about 5 minutes, or until it is golden and soft.
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Sometimes I wish that Bubbles and Booyah was scratch and sniff because the smell of onions cooking is just bomb – mmmmm!

Step Three: Stir in the rice and toast for one minute, stirring frequently (don’t let that rice burn!). Add 1 cup of veggie broth and cook gently while stirring, until all the liquid is absorbed.
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You definitely don’t want to burn the rice. Toasting the rice helps to develop a nice toasty, nutty flavor. If you prefer your risotto to be super creamy but without nutty flavor, skip this step (I mean – if I were you, I wouldn’t – but it’s up to you!) πŸ™‚

Step Four: Continue to add ~1 cup of broth at a time, stirring constantly, and allowing each cup to be absorbed before adding more. This will take about 20 – 25 minutes, and the risotto will turn thick and creamy, and the rice should be tender but not gluey or sticky.
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This is what the rice + the first cup of stock looks like. Sorry, I got distracted half way through and forgot to take any more pics – you can check out my Vegan Paella post to see more risotto-in-action shots.

Step Five: Once the risotto is done, add the leeks and mushrooms, remaining Earth Balance, grated lemon zest and juice, nutritional yeast and half the herbs. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
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I prepped all my herbs, butter, lemon juice and lemon zest before starting the risotto (it really does keep you occupied for 30 minutes while you’re cooking it, so in order to avoid burning my rice, I prep everything before hand so I can just dump it in). This should give you a feel for the amount of fresh herbs, butter and lemon-y stuff I threw in there. Do not be afraid of the Earth Balance! If you’re stingy, it won’t taste as good (usually I try to keep the amount of oil/veg butter I add to my dishes in check, but this is one of the few dishes that is a free-for-all, and I’d throw the entire stick in there if I could).

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Here is what the risotto looks like once everything is added. I actually forgot to reserve half the herbs to sprinkle on top of the finished product, and I just threw them all in – whoops! It doesn’t really matter, but if you’re making this to impress others, it really adds a nice little flair to the presentation. πŸ˜‰

Step Six: Serve with lemon wedges and the remaining herbs sprinkled on top. Enjoy!! πŸ˜€
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The finished product! Voila!

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Dude, I know I say this frequently – but this dish is sooooooooooo bomb. I get really excited to eat my lunch when I pack leftovers of this dish. It has a great balance of flavor, and I really love how the lemon offsets the earthiness of the leeks and mushrooms, and then you throw in the creaminess of the risotto and vegan cheeze – and DAMN that is good. I’ve had it both vegan and un-vegan, and it is seriously so delicious both ways. I was kind of nervous making it without Parmesan cheese (so I bought some at the store as a back up in case I had cold feet), but I tried a small “test batch” with the nutritional yeast and it was JUST as creamy and delicious – YUM! I hope that you guys enjoy this dish as much as I do – it is seriously so freakin’ good.

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This recipe was adapted from this book (see pg. 284). Thanks to my sister J for giving this to me for Christmas many moons ago, it’s one of my absolute FAVE cookbooks ever (as you can tell from all the post-its). πŸ™‚

I hope that you all have a great Thursday today!! It is rainy and cold here today in Boston, but I think we will finally see some warmer temps tomorrow and this weekend! Hooray!! πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€ Enjoy your day, everyone.

With warmth,

L

16 thoughts on “Leek, Mushroom and Lemon Risotto

    • I’ll def keep my fingers crossed! I saw cars with snow on them traveling southbound during my commute this morning, but none stuck in Boston where I live (*thank god*). Every time I’ve seen it snowing outside this week, I just move to a room with no windows, haha.

      This recipe is sooooo good. I really hope you enjoy it! It’s def one of my faves. I hadn’t made it in a while before last night and I surprised myself with how delicious it was – it was even better than I remembered! πŸ™‚

      Like

    • Thanks Dave! Hahaha, you should see the rest of my cookbooks – I’ve marked my fave recipes with post-its, torn off pieces of paper, tissues (unused, don’t worry!), paper towels, index cards, paper clips – the works. It’s a habit I picked up from my mom and grandma. πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

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