Mushroom Truffle Risotto is a delicious meal that is worthy of special occasions. It's rich and creamy with lots of parmesan cheese and delish sauteed mushrooms. Although this recipe is a bit more time consuming with more expensive ingredients, it is my go-to special recipe that I love to make my husband for Valentine's Day or his birthday. This creamy blend of rice is topped with beautifully seared cast iron scallops for a spectacular restaurant quality dinner! If you really want to WOW that special person in your life than this is the dinner for you!
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Truffle mushroom risotto is one of my husband's favorite dishes. It is a labor of love so unfortunately for him he only gets this special dish a couple times a year.
What makes this risotto the best!
Risotto is known for its creamy blend of arborio rice and parmesan cheese. This risotto is even more special with the addition of a truffle spread. Truffle has a rich earthy flavor and pairs well with the mushrooms added to the dish. If that's not decadent enough, it is topped with golden seared scallops for a completely wonderous meal. With this main course it's impossible to tell which is the best part, the creamy rich risotto or the beautifully seared scallops!
arborio- is an Italian rice that is what creates the creamy texture of risotto when cooked.
truffle spread- fresh truffles are extremely expensive. This spread is a more affordable way to add that amazing rich and earthy truffle flavor!
mushrooms- you can use your favorite fresh mushrooms. I used a package of gourmet mushrooms which had a variety, but you could use baby bella mushrooms or wild mushrooms.
chicken broth- I always like a low sodium chicken broth, but you can substitute vegetable broth or vegetable stock. Broth or stock will add a lot of flavor to the risotto while just using hot water would work but not be as flavorful.
scallops- large sea scallops work the best in this recipe. However, if you can only find smaller bay scallops at the grocery store, they will still taste amazing. Depending on where you live it may be difficult to find fresh scallops that have never been frozen. Do not panic, frozen do not mean that it is not higher quality scallop. In fact, they maybe even fresher because they are frozen right away. Simply follow the proper steps to defrost and do not defrost the scallops at room temperature.
First start by melting the butter and the olive oil together in a large skillet over medium heat. Once the butter and oil are warm add the shallots and mushrooms and cook until the mushrooms are tender and the shallots are translucent.
Add the arborio rice and stir to coat in the oil.
Once the arborio has been coated it is time to add the cup of white wine. Sauté while stirring until most of the liquid has soaked into the arborio.
Once the wine has absorbed it is time to add the warm chicken broth, a ladle at a time. I heat the broth in a small saucepan and keep it on low so I can easily add the hot broth to the rice. Continue to stir until the chicken broth has absorbed before adding the next ladle of broth. This process may take 30 minutes. Be patient as this is how the arborio becomes creamy as the starch releases.
After you have finished adding all of the broth, take a bite of the risotto and make sure that the arborio is tender or slightly softer than al dente. If it is not add more broth and continue the process. Once it is tender and finished cooking, it is time to add the truffle spread and the parmesan cheese.
As the final steps of the risotto are finishing it is time to start the scallops in the cast iron skillet. My favorite way to cook scallops is using a cast iron skillet. Cast iron will help you get a great sear on the scallops. If you are looking for perfect scallops with that beautiful golden brown crust, this is the best way to do it. However if you only own a nonstick skillet you can still cook scallops, just make sure you follow the other cooking techniques.
Heat the olive oil and unsalted butter over medium-high heat and wait until the cast iron is hot. It is important that you have a very hot cast iron pan before you add the scallops. Season both sides of the scallops with sea salt and black pepper. Carefully place scallops with tongs into the hot oil.
Cook the scallops for 60-90 seconds on the first side and then flip each one over with the tongs. The scallops will develop a nice crust on the bottom. Continue to cook on the other side until the scallops are cooked through. This whole process takes only couple minutes. Be careful to not overcook the scallops because they will be tough and chewy.
Once the scallops are finished it is time to plate the risotto and add scallops on top. Add additional parmesan cheese to garnish. If you would like you can garnish with fresh herbs like fresh parsley or thyme. It's totally optional.
Cooking risotto correctly takes time. This is not a quick dinner to try to rush. Remember the key to making a creamy risotto is consistent stirring so dedicate an hour and you will have a wonderful meal.
- stir constantly
- add one ladle of warm broth at a time
- stir until broth is absorbed and then add the next ladle
- do not allow the arborio to stick
For the scallops, you will want to look for dry packed in order to get a good sear. Get tips on selecting the best scallops. With these steps you will easily be able to cook perfect scallops.
- remove the foot from the scallop
- pat the scallop dry with a paper towel. If you have wet scallops they will steam instead of sear. It is crucial that you add dry scallops to the hot pan in order to sear scallops.
- do not overcrowd the cast iron skillet, cook scallops in a single layer
What to serve with mushroom risotto
Because we are making this dinner for a special occasion or date night, serve this beautiful main course with a glass of wine! You can also serve a side salad or roasted vegetables as a side dish. Here's a few of my favorites.
Did you try this recipe? Please let me know what you think! Leave a comment below, and a 5- star rating. I would love to hear from you! Subscribe to get new recipes sent straight to your inbox!
Mushroom Truffle Risotto with Cast Iron Scallops
- cast iron skillet optional
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 shallot, minced
- 4 ounces gourmet mushroom
- 2 cups arborio rice
- 1 cup white wine
- 5-6 cups chicken broth
- 1 tablespoon truffle spread
- 2 cups parmesan cheese, fresh grated
- ½ teaspoon salt
Cast Iron Seared Scallops
- 1 pound scallops
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon cracked black pepper
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon butter
- Heat a large deep sided skillet over medium heat. Add butter and olive oil.
- When hot add shallots and mushrooms and sauté for 4-5 minutes. Stir constantly making sure shallots do not burn.
- Once shallots are translucent and mushrooms have softened, add arborio and stir to coat in oil for 1 minute.
- Add cup of white wine to the rice. Stir continuously until wine has absorbed. Meanwhile warm chicken broth on another burner in a small sauce pan.
- Add 1 ladle of warm broth at a time stirring constantly. Wait until broth has absorbed before adding the next ladle of broth. This process may take 25-30 minutes before all of the broth has been used and the arborio is tender.
- When arborio is tender stir in truffle spread and parmesan cheese. Season with salt.
Cast Iron Seared Scallops
- Prepare scallops before cooking the risotto so they are ready to cook when the risotto is at the final stages of being finished. Scallops will need to be thawed if using frozen and as dry as possible. Set on paper towels to pat dry. Keep in the refrigerator until ready to cook.
- When the risotto is close to finished heat the cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. When skillet is hot add the olive oil and butter.
- Wait for the oil to be hot and sizzling before adding the scallops. Carefully add them to the hot oil with tongs.
- Cook scallops on the first side for 60-90 seconds in order to form a nice golden sear before flipping to the other side.
- Cook on other side for just 30 seconds or until scallop is cooked through.
- Immediately plate the risotto and top with the seared scallops. Garnish with parsley and extra grated parmesan cheese if desired.