Fregula is a small, toasted semolina pasta. Israeli couscous is a more readily available stand-in; you can also substitute buckwheat honey for abbamele.
2 1/4 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
1 cup water
1 tablespoon olive oil
8 ounces wild mushrooms
1/3 cup chopped shallots
1 1/4 cups uncooked fregula
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh chives
1/4 cup (2 ounces) goat cheese
1 tablespoon abbamele, divided
3 tablespoons chopped walnuts, toasted
How to Make It
Combine broth and 1 cup water in a saucepan over medium heat; bring to a simmer. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add mushrooms; cook 5 minutes or until moisture evaporates. Add shallots; cook 4 minutes, stirring frequently. Add fregula and salt; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Stir in wine; cook 30 seconds or until liquid is nearly absorbed, stirring constantly.
Set aside 1/4 cup broth mixture; cover and keep warm. Add remaining broth mixture, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring constantly until each portion of broth is absorbed before adding the next (about 15 minutes total). Remove from heat.
Stir in reserved 1/4 cup broth mixture, chives, goat cheese, and 1 1/2 teaspoons abbamele. Sprinkle with walnuts. Drizzle each serving with 1/4 teaspoon abbamele. Serve immediately.
If I were to do this dish again, I would just top the risotto with the goat cheese. When the cheese melts into the risotto it makes the risotto all mass together and kind of clump when you serve it. It also makes the whole dish a different flavor and texture. It gave me a stomach ache. I would not make this again. The only part I did like were the mushrooms.
This was delicious! I forgot the walnuts, but it was still fabulous. As the other reviewers have noted, the lack of protein does prevent it from being a good meal on its own. I think it would probably go really well with some roasted chicken and will try that pairing next time. I used cremini and oyster mushrooms, but might try some more exotic ones next time, like hen-of-the-woods or morels.
An excellent recipe. I do agree that this is best as a side dish unless some protein is added. I used fregola and shiitake mushrooms, but omitted the honey. To me, it was perfect without it. My neighbor and I have a Cooking Light dinner each month using recipes from that month's issue. For the main course, we paired this with the Roasted Tilapia with Orange Salsa and Zucchini with Peppermint.
This was excellent - definately a side dish. I used a combo of oyster, shitake and enoki mushrooms. I also subbed Israeli cous cous for the fregula and used regular fireweed honey instead of the abbamele. Also, I used chopped pistachios instead of the walnuts.
My roommate made this the for dinner the other night. I LOVED it. I agree that it is probably best as a side dish unless you plan to add protein the the recipe. Don't skip the honey and nut topping, that brings the whole dish together!