This is a take on an old vegetarian favourite of mine the mushroom risottto from back in the day before I started enjoying meat again, though with the porcini and chestnut mushrooms this is a seriously meaty meal with a real umami hit.
Soak a 50g dried porcini mushrooms in a litre of hot water for 10 minutes. Make up a litre of vegetable stock.
In a large deep frying pan, soften a finely chopped small onion and clove of garlic in a couple of tbsps olive oil with a pinch of coarse sea salt over a low to medium heat, add 300g arborio risotto rice, the rehydrated porcini removed from the dark liquid, and a handful of chestnut mushrooms, and warm for a few minutes, stirring so the rice becomes coated in the oil. Add a small glass of white wine.
Adding a ladle of the dark porcini liquid and the stock, allow the rice to soak up the liquid before adding another ladle. It will take approximately 40 minutes, keep gently stirring the risotto until all the stock and mushroom liquid is used up. The risotto will become creamy with a little texture and bite left in the rice. Add a knob of butter, a few sprigs of thyme and grate in a little parmesan.
I plated mine up in a rustic bowl and crumbled over some stilton and drizzled with olive oil.
If like me you have been enjoying Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstalls “3 Good Things” then you are probably feeling rightly inspired, 3 things together do often make a perfect triumvirate, but sometimes they just need 1 more thing….
One of my favourite flavour combinations is Port….Stilton….and Walnuts, they embody the rich tastes of this pre-festive season. I will quite happily devour these 3 together, but I really felt a need to let them live happily with a juicy flat iron steak.
The flat iron steak is a deeeply flavoured steak, though with little fat, it needs to be cooked quickly on a high heat and not past medium rare otherwise it toughens up. I cooked mine for a couple of minutes each side in a dry hot pan, with a little smoked sea salt and a grind of black pepper.
Leaving the steakto rest on a warm plate, deglaze the pan with a glug of tawny port, a slice of stilton crumbled in along with a good tablespoon of double cream, stir gently until combined. Spoon onto the rested steak, and serve with a green salad topped with walnuts and a drizzle of the stilton and port sauce.
A glass of port matches this perfectly.
This is so simple it’s hardly a recipe, but it’s totally delicious, and very seasonal, we visited a local farm shop and they had the most beautiful ripe figs, so for a quick little tasty bite, cut a cross in the top of each ripe fig, and pop a chunk of Stilton or similar blue cheese, Dolcelatte or Gorgonzola are both equally nice. Then wrap a piece of prosciutto around each fig securely. Pop in a small oven proof dish, and bake for 10 minutes in an oven at 180 deg C.
The cheese oozes out and the sweetness of the figs is complimented by the salty prosciutto and creamy Stilton.