Baked Chicken, Mushroom & Chestnut Risotto

Baked Chicken, Mushroom & Chestnut Risotto

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I usually try to avoid refined carbs in my meals but you can’t beat a tasty risotto every now and then.  To ensure this stays on the healthy side rather than turning into a creamy rice fest I have made it with stock and no cream and reduced down the rice quantity ensuring it is packed full of protein and veg instead.

If you want to make a veggie version just omit the chicken and use vegetable stock instead.

Ingredients: serves 5 - 6

8g porcini mushrooms

1 onion

1 clove garlic

2 medium chicken breasts, cut into bite sized pieces

100g chestnut mushrooms (or about 14 mushrooms), thinly sliced

Olive oil or butter for cooking

50g whole, cooked chestnuts (I use ready made Merchant Gourmet ones), halved

Black pepper to taste

325g arborito rice

Glug marsala (or white wine)

600ml chicken stock

50g frozen peas

90g parmesan, grated

Method

Cover the porcini mushrooms in boiling water in a jug or a bowl and leave to soak while you prepare the rest.

Preheat oven to 200 fan/ 220 degrees / gas mark 7.

Chop onion, garlic, chicken and mushrooms (don’t forget to clean knife after cutting raw chicken!).

Heat a glug of olive oil or butter in a heavy based deep saucepan or stock pot – it needs to be quite big.

Add the onion and cook for about 5 minutes until soft.

Add the chicken and cook until browned.

Add the garlic and cook for a further 1 minute (if it begins to stick too much at any point just add a little more oil or butter).

Add the mushrooms and cook for another 2 minutes.

Then add the chestnuts and season, mixing thoroughly.

Lastly add the rice and the masala and allow it to boil off.  You can tell when the alcohol has evaporated as it no longer smells when you breathe in the steam.

Take the soaked porcini mushrooms, tearing up any big pieces, and add to the rice.  Then pour in the leftover porcini water avoiding any of the grit in the bottom.

Finally add the stock and stir thoroughly ensuring no rice is stuck on the bottom of the pan.

Bring to the boil and reduce the heat cooking on low for 10 minutes.

Once partially cooked add the peas and 40g of the parmesan.

Pour into an oven dish and put in the oven for 10 minutes.

After 10 minutes check the rice and if it feels a little dry add a little more water.  The last step is to add the remainder of the parmesan to the top of the bake and cook for another 10 minutes until golden brown.

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