Tuscan Risotto with Walnuts and Mushrooms

Discover a taste of Tuscany in this rich and nutty risotto.


  • 4 cups vegetable or chicken stock (32 ounces)
  • A generous handful of dried porcini mushrooms
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh sage, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme, finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups carnaroli or arborio rice
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese
  • 3 tablespoons butter, cut into pieces
  • 1 cup freshly shelled walnuts, chopped and toasted


Warm the stock and 1 cup water in a saucepan over low heat.

Place the mushrooms in a small saucepan and cover with water; bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer on very low heat to reconstitute (or pour 1 cup boiling water over them, cover and let stand for 10 minutes).

In a large skillet, heat the EVOO, two turns of the pan, over medium-high heat. Stir in the onion, garlic, sage and thyme for 3 minutes. Stir in the rice to toast for a minute; season with salt and pepper. Add the wine and cook to evaporate, then begin ladling in the warm stock, allowing all of the liquid to be absorbed before adding more, and stirring vigorously to develop the starch, until the rice is al dente, 18 minutes from the first addition of liquid (you may have a ladle or so of liquid left).

Remove the mushrooms from their soaking liquid and chop. Stir them into the risotto with a little of their strained liquid for flavor. Stir in the cheese and butter to melt. Stir in the nuts and serve.

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