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Oven Baked or AGA Risotto

This is a cheat’s version of a risotto when you don’t have time to stand over it on the hob, you don’t get the same finish but it’s tasty and a great emergency supper.  It’s not a proper risotto but its pretty good, really should call it Oven Savoury rice or something as it’s not a patch on making a proper risotto. When you make a proper risotto this means spending 20 minutes stirring and adding stock but it’s a cheat so you get out of it the time you put into it.  I’ll stop wittering now. Super duper easy to cook in an AGA, good but not quite so quick in a conventional oven.

Ingredients: for 4 people
½ pack dried porchini or wild mushrooms
1litre chicken stock in a saucepan
25g butter
4 shallots, chopped finely
500g Arborio or Carnaroli Risotto Rice
1 glassful of white wine or Madeira wine
leftover cooked chicken or 4 thighs, cooked
40g parmesan, finely grated
40g parmesan, shaved
Freshly ground black pepper and salt to taste

  1. Place the dried mushrooms in a heatproof bowl, cover with boiling water and leave for 20 minutes to rehydrate. Put the stock on to heat
  2. Melt the butter in a large saucepan, on the simmer plate, add the shallots and cook on a medium heat until translucent.  You can do this on the oven floor of the roasting oven. Meanwhile chop the cooked chicken.  Drain the mushrooms, reserving the liquid and chop.
  3. Add the rice to the onion, stirring constantly for 1-2 minutes until the rice is coated with butter.  Now don’t leave the pan! Add the wine and stir until it’s just about evaporated, then add the stock, bring to simmering point, add the chicken, mushrooms and mushroom liquid, season with salt and pepper, cover and transfer to the floor of the simmering oven of the AGA. Put the timer on for 20 minutes. (Conventional oven, preheat to 150c/gas 2, place the pan onto a shelf on the bottom set of runners and cook for 20 minutes).
  4. Check the risotto, don’t stir it, just prod it to see if the liquid has all be absorbed, taste the rice to check if it’s cooked, it should still have a little ‘bite’.  If there is still liquid, put it back into the oven for another 5 minutes.  Check the seasoning
  5. Remove from the oven, add grated Parmesan and black pepper, serve immediately with the Parmesan shavings thrown haphazardly over the top.