Morel Mushroom Risotto with Tarragon Creme

Updated: Mar 29

Season: Spring/Autumn

Prep time: 20 minutes

Cook time: 30 minutes

On my first visit to Milan I experienced their version of this Northern Italian classic and it was love at first bite. Risotto is best made with ingredients that are seasonal.

Morel Mushrooms start the season in Spring. They continue through the Autumn,and there are many delicious varieties.

In this version morels were the star.

Serves 4 as main, 6-8 as a side


1 1/2 cups arborio rice

5-6 cups vegetable broth (homemade is best) 6 cups if not adding portobello broth)

1 cup portobello broth (optional)

(broth to equal 6 cups total)

1/2 cup creme fraiche, (optional)

1 cup parmigiano reggiano (save some cheese for serving)

1/2-3/4 lb. morel mushrooms, or other

1 yellow onion (chopped fine)

3 tbsp. sweet butter

2 tbsp. good olive oil

1/2 cup white wine

1/4-1/2 cup fresh tarragon

1/2 tsp. salt (salt to taste)

1/8 tsp. freshly ground pepper

1/4 tsp. lemon zest (optional)


For Mushrooms

Slice mushrooms into strips.

In medium saucepan over medium to low heat add 1 tbsp. butter and a little olive oil.


Add mushrooms. Saute’ for 3-5 minutes or until mushrooms are tender. Sprinkle with a pinch of salt. Set aside and keep warm.


Heat oil and 2 tbsp. butter in large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and a pinch of salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is translucent.

(About 5 minutes)


Add rice and cook, stirring constantly, until chalky-looking and a white dot is visible in center of each grain.

(About 4-5 minutes)


Add wine and stir constantly until mostly absorbed. Add 1 cup broth and cook, stirring, until mostly absorbed.


Add 1/2 cup more broth and cook, stirring, until mostly absorbed.


Repeat, adding liquid in 1/2 cupfuls, until rice is tender yet still slightly firm to the bite.


This will take approximately 30 minutes.


With heat off, add mushrooms, and parmigiano, and fold into rice.


If using, add creme fraiche, pepper, tarragon, and fold gently until absorbed. Taste for salt. If using lemon zest, add at the end when risotto is plated.

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