Asparagus and Lobster Mushroom Risotto
We’re here to clear risotto’s name. Somehow this simple, unassuming little dish has gained a bit of notoriety as being difficult to cook. Many people are afraid to even attempt risotto at home for fear that they will somehow ruin it. The truth is that with a little love and attention, risotto couldn’t be easier. It even plays well with others, as you can mix in just about any sort of meat or veggies and end up with a delicious meal. We like to combine the creaminess of risotto with the crunch of roasted asparagus and the rich chewiness of lobster mushrooms.
What are lobster mushrooms? Despite their name, lobster mushrooms are not actually a type of mushroom. Rather, they are the result of a parasitic fungus called Hypomyces lactifluorum feeding on certain species of mushrooms. This fungus completely encapsulates the outside of its victims, creating a firm, reddish-orange “shell” reminiscent of a cooked lobster. Its flavor is also said to be seafood-like and as a result the mushroom pairs well with actual lobster and other seafood dishes. They’re also quite tasty on their own in dishes that traditionally call for lobster, like this risotto.
So what about risotto’s fussy reputation? Have you ever heard the phrase, “good things come to those who wait?” Risotto does take a little time and patience, but there’s nothing particularly tricky about cooking it. The important thing is to add your broth slowly and stir frequently (if not constantly). Add a cup of broth at a time, and when the rice has absorbed a little more than half, add more. Once the rice is tender, turn off the heat. That’s it. Simple, right? Toss in some roasted asparagus and lobster mushrooms, and you’ve got a mouth-watering meal or sensational side.