St George’s Mushrooms are strong smelling tasty mushrooms that usually start to pop their heads up after st Georges Day on the 23rd of April . However nature is not an exact science and I have been checking my favourite spot for a couple of weeks so I was ecstatic when I stopped by on the way to the butchers to see the white globes glowing from the leaf litter. Of course I had forgotton my camera & my mushroom knife but I did managed to gather nearly a kilo of mushrooms, leaving plenty to spore for next year.
Most of the mushrooms I have sliced thinly and left to dry and but I wanted to eat some fresh as well for something with such a short season. Last year around the same time I made a risotto with St Georges Mushrooms and Asparagus , its good to eat things together as they come into season fortunately another great wild ingredient is wild garlic, carpets of which can be found in English woodland , they are just coming into flower now .
Although the leaves do go off just a few days after picking, their longevity can be extended by making a wild garlic pesto , blending together a handful of leaves with nuts ( pinenuts ), parmesan or feta and olive oil parmesan . I also like to make a Wild Garlic Butter which keeps in the freezer.
For this risotto I used wild garlic pesto , added at the end of the basic rissotto recipe for two people , the result is not a subtle risotto the strong tasting mushrooms and wild garlic heavenly as a main or an accompaniment to roast chicken.
St Georges Mushrooms and Wild Garlic Risotto
200g of risotto rice
1.5 pints of chicken stock
1 tbsp of butter
1 medium onion finely chopped
3 handfuls of St George’s Mushrooms sliced
- Fry the onion in the butter to soften , but do not allow to colour
- Add the risotto rice , stir to coat well in the butter for about a minute
- Add the mushrooms to the stock and warm through
- Add 1/4 of stock to the rice until absorbed, add the rest of the stock in ladles full stirring continuously.
- Finally add the mushrooms stir well
- Just before serving stir in the wild garlic pesto
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