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An easy, almost no-stir sweet corn risotto recipe with wild mushrooms and cheddar cheese.
After “mmm,” what’s the next word you’d associate with the word “risotto?” Let me guess — would it be “stirring?”
I thought so!
But check this out: Here’s a mostly hands-off, weeknight-friendly recipe for mushroom risotto, full of sweet corn, leeks and creamy, tangy cheddar cheese.
And I don’t call it lazy because it’s a no-brainer, turn on the stove and walk away kind of dish.
It’s lazy because instead of hovering over a pot, stirring and adding liquid a little bit at a time, you add most of the liquid at once and leave the rice alone to work its magic.
Actually, this virtually no-stir method is a more approachable option than the traditional one.
While classic Italian risotto recipes don’t involve lots of ingredients — it’s basically a simple dish of rice, broth and cheese — making it can feel intimidating.
Especially the rules about constant stirring, and the warnings that if you don’t stir properly or often enough, your risotto will be a ruined mess.
Tweaking those rules here means you can make easily make risotto that turns out creamy, delicious and very satisfying without hovering over the pot.
And the bonus is that with all the meaty mushrooms, sweet corn and leeks in this dish, you have a great one-dish vegetarian meal or all-in-one side dish in less than an hour.
What’s the best rice for making risotto?
If you’re looking for the perfect keto risotto, look away! This isn’t it (sorry).
Good risotto, stirring or not, requires a specific type of starchy, medium-grain rice.
- Arborio: Large, plump rice grain that produces a creamy risotto with a nice sticky consistency. Arborio is the most readily available Italian rice for making risotto.
- Carnaroli: Similar to Arborio, Carnaroli is a variety with a higher starch content and a bit more “chew” than Arborio. It’s less widely available and sometimes more expensive, though. Many serious cooks consider Carnaroli ” best” rice for making risotto.
- Vialone Nano: This variety of risotto rice is a little smaller and slightly less starchy than Arborio or Carnaroli, with a more al dente bite after cooking.
No-Stir Corn and Cheddar Mushroom Risotto
- 4 ears sweet corn, shucked (about 2 cups)
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Kosher or sea salt
- 4 ounces (125 g) shiitake mushroom caps or cremini mushrooms, sliced
- 2 leeks, white part only, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
- 1 small jalapeño, finely chopped
- 1 cup (200 g) short grain rice such as Arborio or Carnaroli
- 4 cups (946 ml) chicken or vegetable stock, or water
- 1 ½ cups (170 g) grated white cheddar cheese
- 2 (45 g) or 3 tablespoons butter or mascarpone cheese, optional
- 2 scallions, green tops only, trimmed and sliced thin
- Preheat the oven to 425 (220 C) degrees.
- Shave the kernels from the cob with a sharp knife (or your favorite gadget).
- Spread the corn on a rimmed baking sheet. Toss with a tablespoon or two of olive oil and a generous pinch of salt. Roast the corn until golden brown in spots, about 20 minutes.
- Put a large (12 -14 inch) skillet over medium-high heat and add enough olive oil to coat the bottom of the pan. Add the mushrooms and cook in one layer until they start to brown on one side. Stir them around and continue cooking until they're soft and lightly brown all over, about 10 minutes total. Transfer the mushrooms to a plate and season with salt to taste.
- Wipe out the pan if needed, and return to medium-high heat. Pour in more olive oil to coat the pan. Add the leeks, jalapeño and a large pinch of salt. Cook 5 minutes, until wilted and softened.
- Add the rice, cooking and stirring for 2 minutes. Pour in 3 cups of the stock and bring to a boil. Stir, then lower the heat so that the liquid simmers at a gentle bubble.
- Cook about 15 minutes or until just about all the water is evaporated. Stir the rice again, then add the remaining stock. Turn the heat back up to high to bring it to a simmer, and cook until the rice becomes thick and creamy. Remove from the heat and stir in the corn, mushrooms, cheese and butter or mascarpone, if using.
- Taste the risotto for seasoning and add more salt if needed. Sprinkle the scallion greens over the risotto and serve right away.
Karen’s Notes and Tips
- The key to this cooking risotto with this method is to use a wide shallow pan (12-inches) so the liquid absorbs evenly.
- Roasting the corn adds a delicious toasty taste to it, but if you don’t feel like turning on the oven, cook the corn in a skillet on the stovetop until it starts to turn golden.
- The corn and mushrooms can be cooked up to 3 days ahead.