There is nothing groundbreaking about what I’m sharing with you today. Risotto with chicken and mushrooms stirred in, but like chicken poppyseed casserole and sauteed zucchini, it is somewhat of a personal victory for me in that I think I have finally discovered the way that I can make (almost) one pot meals and still love them. So you get to hear about it.
Oh, I’ve found plenty of casserole-like dishes that I like. Casseroles, in case you’re not familiar, were once one of my strictest kitchen enemies. There were too many different foods mixed together, too many unknown ingredients, too many ingredients I just plain did not like. But since then I’ve discovered mushroom lasagna, and baked rigatoni with tiny meatballs, and most recently baked penne with chicken and sundried tomatoes. And I realized it’s not all casseroles I dislike, it’s that too many casseroles have too many tomatoes or peas or worst of all, onions, in them.
I’ve had similar unfortunate luck with one-pot dinners. Too many of them have onions or rice cooked with onions or tomatoes that simmer with chicken, chicken that I would be happy to eat were it not for the tomatoes. I’ve tried my own versions a few times, and I’ve had a few successes (pot roast of course, and that chicken cooked with peaches was pretty good). Most recently though I tried to cook some chicken with butternut squash and the butternut squash just turned out mushy and not very appetizing.
And so I decided it’s time to take matters into my own hands, with ingredients I know that I love, starting with risotto, which is perhaps Gerrit’s favorite food these days (his eyes become wide with expectation every time I mention it) and just adding some simple baked chicken and sauteed mushrooms. Ok, so it does take an extra pan to bake the chicken in, but we start it in the risotto pan so it still kind of counts as one-pot.
There is nothing revolutionary about this dish. But it is simple and delicious and takes some time and love to make. And with my renewed love of cooking dinner, this is something we’ll be adding to our regular rotation.
Risotto with Chicken and Mushrooms
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Bake Time: 40 minutes
1 boneless chicken breast (skin on or off)
1/2 cup dry white wine
8 oz. mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
2 tablespoons butter
1 large shallot (or about 3 small ones), peeled an diced
1 or 2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced*
3/4 cup Arborio rice
1 cup dry white wine
3 to 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth*
1 to 2 tablespoons butter*
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Heat about 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large saute pan (the same one you’ll use for the risotto) over medium-high heat.
3. Sprinkle both sides of the chicken breast with salt and pepper. Add to the saute pan, browning the chicken breast on both sides, about 2-3 minutes per side.
4. Place the chicken in a baking dish drizzle a bit of olive oil over the top of the chicken, and add about 1/2 cup of white wine and a few splashes of water to the bottom of the pan. Bake for 40 minutes, until cooked through.
5. While the chicken is cooking, make the rest of the dish. Add the sliced mushrooms to the same pan the chicken had cooked in, seasoning them with salt and pepper. Saute until the mushrooms are tender, about 5-7 minutes. Remove the mushrooms from the pan, setting them aside (along with their juices).
6. Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil and 2 tablespoons of butter to the pan. Add the shallot, seasoning with salt and pepper, and saute until tender, 3-5 minutes. Add the garlic and saute for about 1 minute, then add the rice and stir until it is toasted and coated with butter.
7. Add the wine to the pan, scraping the bottom of the pan to release any browned bits. Stir rice until most of the wine is absorbed.
8. Once most of the wine has absorbed, begin adding chicken broth, a few ladles at a time (just enough to cover the rice), stirring rice constantly. Let chicken broth absorb before adding the next addition (each time, just enough to cover the rice) of chicken broth. Continue adding chicken broth and stirring until the rice is cooked, about 35 to 40 minutes.
9. Once the rice is done, add 1-2 tablespoons of butter along with the Parmesan cheese. Stir this in vigorously, shaking the pan back and forth, to make the rice creamier.
10. When the chicken has finished baking, remove from oven, let sit for about 5 minutes, and roughly chop it.
11. Add the chopped chicken along with the mushrooms to the risotto. Stir together and serve immediately.
*I’ve added a lot of either/or ingredients here. Go with what amount you think will taste best for you (or in the case of the chicken broth, however much it takes you to get the rice cooked).