Vegan Recipe: Wild Mushroom and Artichoke Risotto

Fancy dried mushrooms combine with baby bellas and marinated artichokes to produce an earthy and tangy risotto more than capable of standing up to any traditional version. 

1 pint baby bella mushrooms, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 jalapeno, minced
1/3 cup fancy dried mushrooms, diced (such as chanterelles and morels)
1 small jar marinated artichoke hearts
1 cup frozen peas
1/2 cup arborio rice
2 shallots, diced
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup dry white wine
2 1/2 tbls salt
2 tsps black pepper
2 tsps dry thymeI got a large bag of 'chef's blend' fancy dried mushrooms on amazon. It's great for adding umami depth to broths and sauces. 

A mushroom risotto is awesome with just humble mushrooms, but add some more exotic ones as well, and you've really got something. 

Normally I'll use tomato for acid in a risotto, but this time I went with artichokes. I love artichokes. They offer a unique flavor and texture that creates an entirely different risotto experience. I know there is a certa…

Lentil This Be a Lesson to You

Lentils are a highly underappreciated protein. And, yes, they are a protein. 

I credit Alton Brown with my discovery of lentils and their culinary clout. His show Good Eats first introduced me to the product and showcased its versatility.

However, it wasn't until I went vegan, that I truly began to appreciate the enormous power of the lentil. 

In the legume universe the lentil is second only to the soy bean in protein density. While not technically a complete protein, it is damn near close. 

This recipe is, to me, is pretty much the perfect lentil recipe. While there are many wonderful lentil recipes, applications and uses, this recipe is the lentil at, what I consider its very best. 

All the other ingredients are there simply to make the lentil shine its brightest.

1/2 cup dry lentils
1 small red bell pepper, diced
1 pint cremini mushrooms, sliced small
7 cloves garlic, sliced thinly
2 jalapenos, minced
1 tbl dijon mustard
1/2 tbl soy sauce
1/2 tbl hot sauce
3 tbls olive oil
2 tsps turmeric
2 tsps paprika
2 tsps crushed pepper flakes
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tbl salt
2 tsps black pepper
3 cups water

Sweat down your mushrooms with the salt and oil until a lot of the liquid from the mushrooms is present in the pot. Add the lentils and the garlic and allow them to absorb the mushroom liquor. When the pot starts to dry out continue cooking over medium heat stirring often to toast the lentils, but do not allow them to burn. Toast lentils for 5 minutes. 

Add remaining ingredients. Cover the pot and simmer for 10 minutes. Test lentils for tenderness. Continue to simmer until they are tender. 

If you feel like that's a lot of garlic, it is. But lentils really shine with a lot of garlic, especially if you're fond of garlic. 

Note: Post title inspired by Bob's Burgers and their burger of the day puns. Yes, I like Bob's Burgers. I don't care what you say. It is funny.