Bacon and Wild Mushroom Risotto with Baby Spinach

  • carolfitz Posted: 11/14/10
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    I never? give 5 stars but this was really excellent. Prepped the bacon, mushrooms & shallots one day prior and brought back to temp the next evening. Made to recipe except didn't use the olive oil, the Arborio took about 1/2c more broth to finish (always have more hot liquid at the ready), and stirred-in the bacon just before serving rather than sprinkling. Served as very rich side dish to CL's parmesan-crusted pork chops. Excellent meal but $$$ for the risotto.

  • Laurie18 Posted: 05/16/10
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    I would make this again as my family loved it.

  • tdardis1 Posted: 10/21/10
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    I hosted a dinner party recently and this recipe received rave reviews. I used prosciutto instead of traditional bacon. I was out of thyme and used dried Italian seasoning. I did not have time to make my chicken stock and it still tasted amazing. Well worth the effort!

  • StephMerrifield Posted: 07/05/10
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    10 Stars! We used high quality bacon and we think that made an extra special recipe even that much better. THIS IS RESTAURANT QUALITY RISOTTO PEOPLE! The ingredients will cost a lot ($15 bucks for mushrooms at Farmers Market!) but it's worth it. We were concerned risotto wouldn't be good the next day - but it was still five star tasting, just a little softer. Warmed leftovers in oven at 350 and then sprinkled a little parm on top. Great!! Just sorry it's all gone now.

  • ChandraB Posted: 04/26/10
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    My husband also increased the bacon (double, actually), and it was very good. We also used onions and presliced mushrooms to cut down on prep time. His only comment about the dish was that it needed more salt (not in my opinion, though) and a squeeze of lemon.

  • lizardstew Posted: 06/12/10
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    This was really yummy and much easier than I thought risotto would be to make. I couldn't find the oyster mushrooms so I just used extra of the other two kinds. I served it with a cesar salad. I'd make it again.

  • nnadiofuvnap Posted: 12/03/10
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    Great recipe that produces seriously awesome results! I've made it twice and it has turned out just stellar both times. For anyone intimidated or put off by the thought of stirring risotto for 25 minutes, here's a tip: don't. (Stir, that is.) Add the stock a bit at a time and shake the pan. Then let it simmer gently. When your spoon leaves a trail on the bottom of the pan, add more stock, shake the pan, and keep simmering. And don't be attached to adding precisely 4 cups of stock - depending on how dry the rice is, how much the mushrooms absorb, etc. it may take as much as 1/4 cup more or less stock to get tender, creamy risotto.

  • Bullwinkle Posted: 03/06/11
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    SUPER DELISH!!! A few substitutions made and still fantastic: Swanson's low sodium chicken broth for the stock, either all white button or half white button half reconstituted dried shiitakes, parm for the asiago - doesn't matter - it still rocks the plate. Ok, yeah, so you may get a bit more depth of flavor without some of the subs, but it's still excellent and very tasty warmed up the next day for a gourmet office lunch. Your coworkers will be jealous! This dish just hits all those special spots - crispy, salty bacon, earthy mushroom (hello umami!), fresh spinach, creamy starchy goodness of risotto, the delicious smell of sauteed shallots and then when you add in the madeira/sherry... bliss! Totally worth it!!

  • Bethany101 Posted: 11/16/10
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    This was scrumptious even though I cut so many corners with this recipe. I used an organic, low-sodium boxed chicken broth, just cremini mushrooms and parmsean cheese. I look forward to trying it with homemade stock when I have more time. I will no longer be intimidated by making risotto!

  • Elizabeth61 Posted: 04/28/10
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    I made this the other night and it was absolutely delicious! My husband and daughter loved it too. It can be quite time consuming if you don't have all of your ingredients chopped and ready to go.

  • ChefAmandaLynn Posted: 05/22/10
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    This was awsome! Risotto always takes awhile to make, but I didn't think the prep was that bad. I did use store bought chicken stock which saved a lot of time. I am not sure is it really mattered to use three different varieties of muchrooms (cost me $12.) I think good ol' presliced muchrooms would have been just as good.

  • DeniseandBen Posted: 06/16/10
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    AMAZING as a meal or as a side dish. Used Bella mushrooms for Cremini bc my grocer doesn't have them. (8oz instead of 4). Use 8 cups spinach instead of 4, as well. Have made this for numerous people and they all rave about it! Quickly became a family favorite.

  • koblesky Posted: 08/24/10
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    I was really excited to try this. Every ingredient sounded awesome. But after it was done, while it tasted good, it was a little bland. Maybe it needed more Thyme, or pepper, or better bacon. Maybe that was my fault So I would say, make sure to season it well or it will be a little bland.

  • AmyBinSJ Posted: 05/17/10
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    Made it for dinner - it was good. Had it for lunch the next day - it was DIVINE. Some things are just better as leftovers. I used plain ol' low sodium chicken broth and it was still super savory.

  • KMartinez Posted: 06/19/10
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    This was fabulous! I mixed the crumbled bacon into the risotto before serving instead of serving it on top. Also, I used 4oz shitake and 8oz baby bella. Otherwise, I followed the recipe to a tee. Wonderful flavor!

  • eep128 Posted: 04/25/10
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    When I saw this recipe, I instantly thought of my husband who loves bacon. This was a very filling and satisfying meal. I used store-bought chicken stock, onion instead of shallots, and a shredded asiago/romano/ parm blend. We increased the amount of bacon for all of the bacon lovers in the house. However, Grandma didn't have bacon on hers and still liked it. The only bad thing about it was that it took me forever to prep the ingredients and make the risotto. If you can find pre-cleaned and slice mushrooms, you will save yourself some time.

  • HeatherLeah Posted: 04/20/10
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    This recipe was fantastic -- well worth the time it takes to make risotto. My husband loved how "meaty" the dish tasted, even though it really only uses a few slices of bacon. It makes a very satisfying portion for the calories. My only modifications were to skip the olive oil and use less bacon drippings than it called for, and I didn't miss them at all. I'd also say, add the salt to taste because you get a lot of sodium from the Asiago and the bacon. Mine came out considerably darker than the photo -- maybe because I like to cook my bacon pretty brown, which darkened the drippings? -- but the flavor was wonderfully rich and fancy enough to serve for a nice occasion, too.

  • TinaLuke Posted: 10/27/10
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    DELICIOUS! This is definitely a keeper--perfect for a special occasion or for any weeknight. Substituted 1/2 red onion and pre-sliced mushrooms and was still very tasty. Makes the house smell wonderful as well! As suggested, it pairs nicely with a Pinot Noir.

  • carilum Posted: 05/10/10
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    My daughter is not a big fan of rice--but she LOVED this dish. I substituted arugula for the spinach and it was fantastic. This will become a family favorite.

  • mjmayinsf Posted: 01/05/11
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    Good, but the flavors were a little heavy-handed. I felt like it needed a pop of something to brighten it at the end - maybe lemon juice?

  • AntjeM Posted: 05/22/10
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    Wow! Made this for dinner tonite and it was wonderful. I cheated and used Trader Joe's Free Range Chicken broth and Whole Foods frozen organic wild mushrooms but it tasted fabulous. I served it with leftover brisket and it was good enough for company. This recipe goes in my keeper file!

  • LReneeM Posted: 10/08/10
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    Really great. I only have two MINOR complaints. The first is that I would cut the salt in half, I found it too salty. The second is that I found it a little too bacon-y. I would cut out down on the drippings. I used a 4oz "exotic mushroom mix" and the other 8oz were standard cut white mushrooms. Tasted fine.

  • FrankieMAC Posted: 01/16/11
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    This is the best risotto I've ever made. A total winner and very suitable for guests.

  • CarrieZ Posted: 01/10/11
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    Made this last night and we loved it. It's a definite keeper!! It takes a little time to make, but it's definitely worth the effort, and would be appropriate for a nice/special meal. As recommended by the note at the bottom of the recipe, this went very well with a pinot noir.

  • LaraKate Posted: 01/25/11
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    This was the first risotto I ever attempted to make and it was fantastic! Even my husband who hates mushrooms and spinach liked it. To save time, we did use box chicken broth and also used only crimini mushrooms (to ease my husband's fear). Will be making this again!

  • karenfar Posted: 06/25/11
    Worthy of a Special Occasion
    Huntington Beach, CA

    EXCELLENT!! I made a recipe for 2 and it made plenty. I used boxed chicken broth, all cremini mushrooms, and parmesan cheese, great flavor.

  • Zorian Posted: 07/26/11
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    When the recipe asked me to add the spinach I was a little worried. The Risotto had such a wonderful mushroom flavor and now I am going to add spinach, and cheese? However the flavors balance out exquisitely. Defiantly one to make again.

  • akfishinqueen Posted: 08/02/11
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    This was a winner with my family. I didn't have all the ingredients - I used cremini mushrooms, red onion in place of shallots and canned reduced sodium chicken broth. I also added 1 tablespoon of white wine vinegar at the end to brighten the flavor. Next time I will skip the madeira and use only white wine, and top with crispy, drained bacon bits to cut back on the calories (instead of using fresh bacon slices and cooking in the bacon fat.)

  • Emanna7 Posted: 09/14/11
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    My family loves this recipe. We used a tablespoon of dairy-free margarine instead of cheese because my daughter is allergic to dairy. The recipe is a great platform for multiple risotto recipes.

  • coravd Posted: 09/17/12
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    Wow! This is a fantastic recipe! It does take some time to make it correctly, but its worth it! I buy chicken stock from the store rather than making it from scratch to save some time. I also use more bacon that the recipe calls for... yuuummm bacon!

  • EatStylePlay Posted: 04/01/13
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    I made this twice, it was so good that I made it for my food blog, linking here of course. I did add more of the Garlic, Shallots and Thyme, and seasons with Black Pepper. I think it was delicious, and I topped them with Seared Scallops and it was great. My family loved it. I've had some bad risotto in my day so i decided to start looking to make my own at home. I also used fresh Parm in addition to the Asiago Cheese.

  • Grantsmommy Posted: 07/13/12
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    Excellent made with short ribs. Made plenty. Used store bought stock sure homemade would be better.

  • detailaddict Posted: 01/26/13
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    I found this to be just okay...a lot of work for not much flavor. I didn't have enough shallots, but usually onions are not the problem and my husband doesn't care for them anyway. I also had to sub baby bellas for the creminis, 1/2 oz. of the shiitakes and about half the oyster mushrooms, but the total was still about right. I'll probably add more cheese to the leftovers, and I do enjoy the process of making risottos in general, so I'm willing to work with it a bit. But I've had better CL risottos so I won't be in a hurry to make this again.

  • badkitty Posted: 08/12/13
    Worthy of a Special Occasion

    This is the 3rd time making this. I use Nature's promise chicken stock. The first time, I took the leftovers, formed them into patties, dredged them in panko and sauteed, to use as a side. The second time, I used a Babycakes piemaker and puff pastry to make gourmet hot pockets, and I think that's what I'll do this time. Absolutely a winner. My husband has the most interesting lunches at work, lol. The guys all want to know where he gets these exotic dishes, and are stunned to hear they came from home, via Cooking Light.

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