A hearty bowl of herby, mushroomy farro risotto (farrotto) topped with lots of parmesan cheese. It’s the more nutritious and addictively chewy version of your classic risotto. This is a simple and warming winter recipe. It makes a great side dish or main meal.
4 cups vegetable stock
3 tablespoons olive oil (or butter)
½ large onion finely chopped
Salt & pepper
350 g cremini (Baby Bella) mushrooms cleaned, trimmed, and thinly sliced
250 g mixed wild mushrooms (I like to add dried porcinis too)
3 garlic cloves finely chopped
Fresh thyme, finely chopped
Handful of finely chopped fresh parsley (plus more for garnish)
1½ cups farro
¾ cup dry white wine
¾ cup grated parmesan cheese (plus more for serving)
Squeeze of fresh lemon juice
Heat the stock in a saucepan over medium-low heat until just barely simmering. Keep the liquid warm over low heat.
If using dried mushrooms - they will need a good soak in hot water to rehydrate and clean them. Simply place them in bowl, fully submerged in boiling or very hot water, cover and let sit for 20 to 30 minutes. The result will be plumped up mushrooms. You can strain and save the soaking liquid to use if you want an even more 'mushroomy' flavour.
Add the olive oil (or butter) to a large pot. Once hot, add the onion and cook for a few minutes, stirring often, until the onion is soft and translucent. Season with salt & pepper.
Turn up the heat and add the mushrooms. After a couple of minutes the mushrooms will begin to sweat and release moisture. Cook for a few minutes until the mushrooms have softened. Add the garlic, parsley and fresh thyme and stir through. Cook for a minute or so, until the garlic releases its fragrance. Season with salt and pepper.
Add the farro and toast over a medium to high heat a minute or two, stirring continuously.
Add the white wine and cook until the wine has been completely absorbed. This will take 2-3 minutes. Add the stock, mix well, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer, cover, and cook for 45 to 50 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes or so, or until the farro is cooked. To help thicken the risotto you can remove the lid for the last 5-10 minutes. If there is still a lot of liquid remaining you may want to increase the temperature slightly
Over low heat, add the grated parmesan cheese and lemon juice and stir to combine. Season to taste.
Remove the pot from heat, cover, and allow the risotto to sit for 5 minutes before serving.
Serve with fresh parsley, and extra parmesan if desired.
Tips for Mushroom Farro Risotto Success:
Feel free to use any combination of wild mushrooms.
If you are not vegetarian you can also use chicken broth instead of vegetable stock.
Don't leave out the cheese! It adds a lot of flavour and adds to the overall texture.
It is best to let the risotto to sit, covered, for about 5 minutes before serving.