Archives for posts with tag: chanterelles

i’ve only made risotto once before, but i have been reminded many times by tom colicchio in a few top chef episodes that it can be quite tricky. in fact, once again a chef was just recently eliminated by making one not to the judges liking. i’ve had a wild mushroom risotto at past top chef winner ilan hall’s restaurant the gorbals, and mr. colicchio’s vegetable risotto at craftsteak in las vegas, so i have an idea of what the consistency and taste should be. what is so damn difficult?

karl, my mushroom guy, at the hollywood farmers market had a wide array of mushrooms sunday, so i thought i’d try my hand at a wild mushroom risotto. i chose black trumpets, chanterelles, and shiitakes. i compiled the list of ingredients and amounts after the fact, so some are approximations, and others are optional or interchangeable. for instance, i grabbed what i thought was frozen vegetable stock from my freezer and as it melted i realized i had in fact taken out a container of lobster stock. i happened to have tarragon and savory on hand, but sage and thyme could also work, and white wine can be used instead of red.


  • 4 cups lobster stock
  • olive oil
  • 1/2 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 2 cups wild mushrooms, big ones cut up, leave small ones whole
  • 1 tbsp fresh tarragon, chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh savory, chopped
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • s+p
  • 1 cup arborio rice
  • 1/4 cup red wine
  • 1 cup grated parmesan
  • 1 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped


heat the stock so it is warmish-hot.

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sauté about 1/3 of the garlic and onion in some olive oil for about 3-5 minutes or until translucent. add the mushrooms, butter, tarragon and savory and continue cooking for a few minutes until the mushrooms have just browned. add some s+p to taste. set aside and keep warm.

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coat the bottom of and heavy bottom pan, such as a dutch oven, with olive oil and sauté the remaining onion and garlic until translucent as well. add the rice and stir quickly allowing the rice to be coated with the oil and opaque, about a minute. apparently this cooks the starchy coating and keeps the rice from sticking. add the wine and stir until it is almost evaporated.

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add the stock, a ladle at a time, and stir until just absorbed. then add the next ladle of stock and repeat each time allowing the stock to be incorporated until your stock is gone. stirring continuously should help cook the rice evenly and not stick to the bottom of the pan. i noticed a couple ladles near the end of adding the stock the rice still seemed to be a bit al dente, and also the rice and stock seemed to be making a creamy saucy consistency. by the time the final ladle had been incorporated the rice was perfectly cooked and not mushy. the risotto shouldn’t be too thick, but also not runny. it should almost ooze.

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stir in the mushrooms, parmesan and parsley. add s+p to taste.

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serve immediately.

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makes 2-3 servings.

i must say even though i was a bit skeptical the lobster stock might not be the right choice when i was defrosting it, it turned out to be a really nice compliment to the earthy mushrooms. granted i know i only made a small batch, i’m not working in the confines of a kitchen foreign to me, and i was able to use my own equipment and tools, but this just wasn’t that hard, and it turned out really tasty. i certainly doubt i would get eliminated on an episode of top chef for this dish, and who knows perhaps i would win?


this recipe was adapted by tasting table from steven brown, chef and owner of tilia in minneapolis, mn. i also made a few adjustment to my taste, and frankly my pocket book. for instance, i am not too big on salt, so i reduced it in a few places, and chanterelles are just fucking expensive (not to mention halibut), so i easily cut the mushroom amount in half. unless i missunderstood my mushroom vendor’s math, they were selling chanterelles for $30/lb, and they had $5 bags ready to go, which means that would equal 1/6lb. it was a perfect amount for 2 servings, anymore seemed like it would be overkill and take away from the rest of the dish. the original recipe was for 4 and i made it for 2, so i have made all my adjustments above and a few others below. there are a lot of spices and ingredients in general, but this is actually a quite easy dish to make. i even made my own madras-style curry from spices i already had on hand.


  • 2 halibut fillets, 1/4 lb each
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp anise seeds
  • 1/4 cup mirin (japanese sweet rice wine)
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar

sweet corn curry-

  • 1/2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • zest of 2 limes (or 3 kaffir-lime leaves, if you can find them)
  • 1/2 small onion, diced
  • 1 cup sweet corn, cut from a fresh ear
  • 1/2 jalapeño, seeded and diced
  • 1 1/2 tsp madras-style curry powder
  • 1/2 cup light coconut milk (it’s what i had on hand, regular would be fine too)
  • 1/3 cup chicken stock

pickled chanterelles-

  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup rice vinegar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp yellow mustard seeds
  • 1/4 tsp coriander seeds
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 tsp anise seeds
  • 1 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1/6 pound chanterelle mushrooms, cleaned
  • 1/8 small onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 small carrot, thinly sliced into 2-inch-long slices

prepare the halibut: season the fish on all sides with the salt and anise seeds and set aside for 1 hour, allowing to come to room temperature. this is also a good time to collect and prep the rest of the ingredients. after an hour, in a medium bowl, combine the mirin and rice vinegar and dip the fillets in the mixture. remove and pat dry. set aside while you make the rest of the dish.

make the corn curry: in a medium saucepot set over medium heat, sweat the butter, garlic, lime zest, onion, corn, jalapeño and curry powder until the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes.

stir in the coconut milk and chicken stock and bring the mixture to a simmer.

simmer for 5 minutes, then remove from the heat and purée in a blender. keep warm.

make the pickled chanterelles: in a medium saucepot set over medium heat, combine the water, rice vinegar, sugar, sea salt, mustard seeds, coriander seeds, chile flakes, anise seeds and garlic. bring to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes. place the mushrooms, onion and carrot in a medium bowl and pour the water-vinegar mixture over the vegetables. let sit to soak and marinate.

preheat oven to 375º. place the fish on a lightly oiled glass baking dish and cook for 12 to 15 minutes, until the fish is opaque and warm all the way through. i used a glass pyrex pie dish with a bit of coconut oil smeared on the bottom.

divide the curried-corn sauce among 2 bowls, or deep plates, and top each with a halibut fillet. use a slotted spoon or fork to take the mushroom mixture out of the liquid and place on top of the fish. serve immediately.

well done steven brown. this is one of the best dishes i have ever made. although every single ingredient is a favorite of mine, i just wasn’t sure how it would all fit together in the end. the creamy coconut corn and the tangy earthiness of the mushrooms worked perfectly together with the light flaky halibut and the slight tinge from the anise.


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