This autumnal risotto has a wonderful nutty flavour and is low in fat too. However, the gluten in spelt is more water-soluble, making it easier to digest. This spelt and mushroom risotto uses pearled spelt, which means the outer layer of bran has been removed – this speeds up the cooking process and allows the grain to soak up all the delicious flavours.

Ingredients of Wild Mushroom Risotto (Fat Free)

  • dried porcini mushrooms 20g
  • vegetable oil 2 tbsp
  • chestnut mushrooms 250g, sliced
  • onion 1, finely chopped
  • garlic 2 cloves, finely chopped
  • pearled spelt 250g
  • white wine a glass (optional)
  • vegetable stock 500ml, hot
  • soft cheese 2 tbsp
  • Italian hard cheese 25g, finely grated, plus extra to serve
  • flat-leaf parsley a small bunch, leaves torn
  • lemon 1, zested and a squeeze of juice

Method of Wild Mushroom Risotto (Fat Free)

  • STEP 1 Put the dried porcini mushrooms in a small bowl and pour more than 250 ml of just boiled water.
  • STEP 2 Heat 1 tablespoon vegetable oil in a large skillet over high heat and add the chestnut mushrooms. Cook 5 to 10 minutes or until all the moisture has evaporated and they are caramelized. Reduce the heat and add the remaining oil, onion, garlic and a little seasoning, and cook gently for 5 minutes until tender. Add the spelled and mix until it is completely coated with oil. Add the wine, if necessary, and cook until it is reduced by 1⁄2.
  • STEP 3 Drain the porcini mushrooms, keeping the liquid, chop and add to the risotto. Add the porcini liquid to the broth and add a ladle at a time to the risotto. Cook 25 minutes or until the spelled is tender. Stir through soft and hard cheeses, followed by parsley.
  • STEP 4 To serve, divide into bowls, squeeze out a little lemon juice, scatter over the lemon zest and additional cheese, if desired.

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