This dish is a delicious fusion of Italian and Middle Eastern flavours. The risotto is seasoned with zahtar spice; a blend of sumac, sesame seeds and thyme. It's delicate flavour combination teams beautifully with the earthy portobello mushrooms and creamy risotto.
Always refer to the product label for the most accurate ingredient and allergen information.
Vegetable Stock Pot(ContainsCelery, Sulphites)
Fill a pot with the water (amount specified in the ingredient list) and put it on high heat. Add the vegetable stock pot and stir to dissolve. When your stock comes to the boil, reduce the heat to low and keep warm.
Meanwhile, start your prep by cutting the shallot in half through the root. Peel and then chop into ½cm chunks (or as small as you can). Peel and grate the garlic(or use a garlic press if you have one).
Heat a saucepan over medium heat and add a glug of oil. Add your shallot and cook for 5 mins until soft.
Cut the portobello mushroom into 1cm thick slices. Remove the core from the red pepper and cut into 1cm slices as well.
When your shallot is soft, add your garlic and ras-el-hanout. Cook for 1 minute and then add the arborio rice. Stir well to coat your rice in the spices and then add a ladle of your hot stock to the pan. Stir well until this stock is absorbed by your rice.
Add another ladle of stock. Keep the pan on medium heat and continue adding stock (and stirring now and again while it cooks), letting it absorb before adding another ladle. The cooking should take 20-25 mins and your risotto is done when your rice is ‘al dente’. Tip: ‘Al dente’ simply means the rice is cooked through but has a tiny bit of firmness left in the middle. If you feel the risotto isn't quite cooked but all the stock has been used, just add a ladle of water and continue the process for a little longer.
Keep an eye on your risotto and heat a frying pan over high heat. Add a glug of oil and then fry your pepper for 5 mins or until nicely browned and soft. Transfer to a plate when done and then fry your mushroom in the same pan for 5 mins. Tip:Add another splash of oil to the pan if it needs it.
When your mushroom is soft and glossy, season with salt and black pepper and then return your pepper to the pan. Remove from the heat and sprinkle over the zahtar spice. Keep to one side while you finish off your risotto.
When your risotto is ready, stir in the butter and crumble in half the feta cheese. Taste and add some salt and black pepper if necessary.
Serve your risotto in deep bowls and top with your mushroom and pepper. Drizzle on any juices from the pan and finish by crumbling over your remaining feta cheese.