Instant Pot Mushroom Risotto

August 4, 2019 at 9:14 pm (Alma's faves, B plus (3 stars, like a lot), Fall recipes, Grains, Instant Pot, Italian, Jill Nussinow, Monthly menu plan, Spring recipes, Winter recipes)


I tried making risotto in the instant pot a few months ago, and I got distracted and forgot to release the pressure immediately after it was done cooking. The result: mush. It tasted good but the texture was awful. Derek wouldn’t touch it. But I finally got up the nerve to try it again.

Alma and I looked at various combinations in the book Vegan Under Pressure and she chose the spinach risotto, but then I forgot to buy spinach and had some mushrooms to use up, so I decided to make the mushroom risotto instead. (Sorry Alma.) I didn’t really follow the Vegan Under Pressure recipe, but I did use it for inspiration. Below I list my recipe, and explain how it diverges from Jill Nussinow’s.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 large onion, finely diced or 1.5 cups finely chopped leek (original recipe calls for 1 cup diced leek)
  • 8 oz (425g) crimini mushrooms, half chopped and the other half sliced (original recipe calls for 1 to 2 cups sliced)
  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 2 cups arborio or carnaroli rice (original recipe calls for 1.5 cups)
  • 1/2 to 1 ounce dried porcini mushrooms, not soaked (original recipe called for 1/2 ounce soaked, but more doesn’t hurt)
  • 5 sun-dried tomatoes, unsoaked, torn or cut into pieces (original recipe calls for 3 to 4, rehydrated)
  • 1 Tbs. porcini mushroom powder
  • 5.5 cups veggie broth (original recipe calls for 3.5 to 4 cups)
  • 1 (or 2?) tsp. veggie bouillon powder + salt to taste
  • a big knob of butter, maybe a tablespoon or two?
  • parmesan cheese, grated
  • 8 Tbs. chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley (original recipe calls for 3 Tbs.)

Instructions:

  1. Prep: Mince the garlic. Chop the onion or leek. Let the garlic and onion sit while you wash and slice the mushrooms. If you need to defrost vegetable broth, do it now.
  2. Saute: Set the instant pot to saute. When hot, add the olive oil and onion and saute for a few minutes. While the onion is sauteing, measure out your rice, your mushroom powder, and your dried mushrooms. When the onion is translucent add the garlic and saute another minute or two. Stir in the rice to coat with oil, then add a quarter cup of red wine (if using). When the wine has mostly evaporated add the vegetable broth.
  3. Next, add the dried porcini mushrooms, crushing them into small pieces with your hands as you drop them into the pot. Add the the sun-dried tomatoes, using scissors to slice each one into about 4 pieces as I drop them into the pot. Finally, add the sliced fresh mushrooms and the bouillon powder.
  4. Cook: Lock on the lid. Cook at high pressure for 2 minutes 40 seconds. (You’ll have to set a timer as soon as the Instant Pot comes to pressure, as it only allows whole minutes). As soon as the  timer goes off, immediately release the pressure. (Don’t get distracted! You do not want to leave it any longer than this!) Immediately (and carefully) remove the lid.
  5. Adjust: If the risotto is not cooked through all the way, add a little more boiling hot broth and leave on saute for another few minutes, but make sure to keep stirring so it doesn’t burn on the bottom. When the rice is al dente, stir in more stock as needed to get a creamy texture, then stir in the butter and parmesan if desired. Season with salt and pepper, and add a touch of lemon juice if you like.
  6. Garnish: Serve with fresh parsley and more parmesan cheese.

My notes:

Timing: Nussinow’s recipe says to cook under pressure for 5 minutes, but I was nervous about getting mush again, so I decided to start with 3 minutes. And 3 minutes was definitely enough. Derek said it might be worth trying 2.5 minutes next time. And this was with almost boiling vegetable stock. If your stock is not hot, I imagine you’d need even less time under pressure, since it will take longer to come to pressure. Maybe next time I will start with ice cold broth and try 2.5 minutes.

On a second attempt I used warm (not hot) broth and cooked it for 2.5 minutes and it was definitely not cooked through. I had to saute quite a bit and it ended up burning on the bottom. On a third attempt I released slightly before the 3 minutes were up and it still wasn’t cooked (but the brand of rice was different). Maybe the right approach is to use almost boiling broth and cook under pressure for 3 minutes?

It took me about 4 minutes of venting for the pressure to drop completely, even with the quick release. At that point the risotto was cooked well, but quite dry. I had to add more than a cup of broth after I opened it up to get the right consistency.

I forgot to time how long it took to come to pressure. I think it took somewhere between 5 and 10 minutes? So maybe 5-10 minutes + 3 minutes + 4 minutes + a few minutes to stir in the broth and butter and parmesan and serve it. So once you get do your prep, saute the onions, add all the ingredients, and get the lid on the pot it seems like the risotto would be ready approximately 15 to 20 minutes after you press start? But that time is almost entirely hands off. It’s definitely an improvement over stovetop risotto in my book.

Dried mushrooms: I didn’t have real dried porcini mushrooms, so instead I used some local French mushrooms from the farmer’s market. The man who gathered them and sold them to me told me that they’re cheaper than porcinis but taste similar.

Rehydrating the vegetables: Nussinow has you soak the porcinis and tomatoes to rehydrate them, but I figured if the rice can go from rock hard to soft in the pressure cooker in 3 minutes, then shouldn’t the vegetables be able to do the same? I skipped the soaking step and it worked out fine. Maybe I needed a bit more broth though.

Review: Everyone liked this recipe. Alma scarfed it up, which shocked me because she’s never eaten more than one bite of risotto before, and when we were looking at recipes she was dead set against the mushroom variation. Derek and I both enjoyed it as well. Now I want to try some of the other variations, like the spring saffron risotto with peas and asparagus, the summer risotto with green beans and tomatoes, or the winter squash and kale risotto. Yum.

3 Comments

  1. austingardener said,

    Easy Risotto. Almost makes me want to get an instant pot.. Almost

  2. Kathy, Spoons, and Hazel said,

    Hi Rose! We like this recipe with a bit of miso paste (!) in it: https://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2014/12/pressure-cooker-mushroom-risotto-recipe.html

    Happy New Year! 🙂

    • captious said,

      Interesting, the Serious Eats recipe calls for less rice (1.5 cups vs. 2 cups in mine), more mushrooms (but no porcini powder), miso and soy sauce (but no sundried tomatoes), wine and cream and way more butter and oil. Is it super rich? Ours already tastes quite rich. I might try adding a little soy sauce and miso to my recipe next time and see what we think.

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