Crisp bacon brings crunchy texture and smoky flavor to this creamy rice dish that's packed with three types of mushrooms, baby spinach, and Asiago cheese.
Cooking Light MAY 2010
1. Bring Homemade Chicken Stock to a simmer in a small saucepan (do not boil); keep warm over low heat.
2. Heat a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add bacon to pan; cook 8 minutes or until crisp, stirring occasionally. Remove bacon from pan with a slotted spoon. Add shallots, oil, thyme, and garlic to drippings in pan; cook 6 minutes or until shallots are tender, stirring occasionally. Stir in mushrooms; cook 8 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add rice, and cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Stir in Madeira; cook 1 minute or until the liquid is nearly absorbed, stirring constantly. Stir in 1 cup stock; cook 4 minutes or until the liquid is nearly absorbed, stirring constantly. Add remaining stock, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring constantly until each portion of stock is absorbed before adding the next (about 25 minutes total). Stir in spinach; cook 1 minute. Remove from heat; stir in cheese, salt, and pepper. Sprinkle with bacon.
Wine note: A light-bodied pinot noir can echo the smoky and earthy flavors of Bacon and Wild Mushroom Risotto with Baby Spinach, without overpowering the dish as a bigger red wine might. Redtree Pinot Noir 2008 ($8), from California, shows this grape's aromatic earthiness, along with snappy, tart berry fruit that provides a palate-cleansing contrast to the creamy texture of this dish. —Jeffery Lindenmuth
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