Dinner for Scottish and Finnish grandparents — Inspired by Yotam Ottolenghi

My hubby suprised me the other day with four new cook books. The books arrived just in time for Aberdonian grandparents' visit to Finland. I wanted to prepare us something off the Yotam Ottolenghi's The Cookbook, but lacked some of the ingredients and instead decided to be inspired by Yotam. I prepared Portobello mushrooms with fried courgette and risotto, instead of the Portobellos with pearly barley and preserved lemon.
Wash, peel and slice courgettes and shallow-fry them in vegetable oil. I used a mixture of sunflower and olive oil. Season with salt. 

Prepare the Portobello mushrooms: Pour some extra virgin olive oil into a baking dish and cut in few thin slices of butter. Sprinkle over with pepper, salt and fresh thyme.
Place the mushrooms on the dish (stems removed). Then pour over a half a cup of white wine and place thin slices of butter on top.
As the mushrooms are slowly roasting under a foil wrap in 180 C degree oven for 15–20 minutes, prepare the base for the risotto. You will need a pan, some extra virgin olive oil, couple of cloves of garlic, a finely chopped small red onion. Once you have sauteed these ingredients, throw in a chopped portobello mushroom.
Next stir in the risotto rice. My favourite is Vialone Nano a small-grain ritotto rice from Azienda Agricola, Principato di Lucendio, Italy. I get it from my favourite cook shop.

Start gradually adding hot stock, and if you are busy, involve the grandmothers. They are good at stiring things. I took some home-made chicken and vegetable stock from the freezer, but there is nothing wrong with using bouillon cubes.
As the risotto is cooking, ask your partner to grill some veggies and/or meat, knockwurst, fish or even grilled cheese.
When the rice is close to being al dente, stir in some grated cheese (e.g. a mixture of Parmigiano-Reggiano, Pecorino Romano and mature Cheddar) and the fried courgettes. Save some fried courgettes for deco.
 
 
Prepare the mushroom risotto starter: Place each mushroom on a serving plate, stem-side up. Scoop the risotto on top and garnish with some fried courgettes and chopped parsley.


Serve the grilled veggies with some balsamic vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, parsley and salt.

Serve the veggies as is or with meat, knockwurst, etc.

As a dessert, we had waffles with sliced and sugar-sweetened strawberries.



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