Mushroom oatmeal ‘risotto’ for Visit Scotland porridge tour

 In Autumn, Cereals & Pulses, Fruit, Vegetables & Cereals, Havering, Risotto, Winter

When you think of Scottish food, and cereals in particular there’s one thing that instantly springs to mind. Oats. The grain the nation was built on (actually barley can feel a little aggrieved at being sidelined but that’s not another day). The historical picture of our ancestors is of supping brose for breakfast, and carrying oatcakes cooked over the fire, onto the hillside. And while haggis, rich with oatmeal, is the national dish, then surely porridge is the national breakfast. I like to make mine with pinhead oatmeal steeped overnight, yielding a wonderfully nutty creamy and heartwarming meal to start the day. Therefore when I was asked to present a recipe for Visit Scotland’s ‘Porridge Grand Tour of Scotland’ I thought it would be fun to combine this wonderful ingredient with the cooking technique of the risottos I cook so often.

Mushroom oatmeal risotto

(Serves 2)

15g dried porcini mushrooms
400ml boiling water
1 onion finely chopped
2 sprigs thyme
6 sage leaves finely chopped
1 clove garlic finely chopped
Knob butter
1tbsp olive oil
100g pinhead oatmeal
150g chestnut mushrooms chopped
50ml red wine
Salt and pepper
Bonnet cheese grated (pecorino or Parmesan if unavailable)

  1. Rehydrate the porcini in the boiling water. This will form the stock with salt added during he cooking process to taste;
  2. Once hydrated remove the porcini from the stock and roughly chop;
  3. In a sauté pan heat the oil and butter over a medium heat, sweat the garlic, onion, sage, and leaves from the thyme, until the onion becomes translucent;
  4. Add the chopped porcini and cook for a minute then add the chestnut mushroom and cook for another minute;
  5. Add the oatmeal and stir round, cook for 2-3 minutes constantly stirring ensuring it doesn’t burn;
  6. Add in the red wine and stir until evaporated;
  7. Add in all he stock and bring to a gentle simmer over a low heat, stirring regularly, as the ‘risotto’ begins to thicken season with a good pinch of salt, taste and add more if required;
  8. Cook until all the stock has evaporated, it should be a thick porridge like consistency, with the oatmeal still having a bit of bite;
  9. Add a good grating of the cheese and a grinding of black pepper. Serve with venison steak or pigeon breast.

Mushroom oatmeal porridge risotto with venison

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