Sauteed Mushrooms for Risotto or Orzo

December 19, 2023

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Sauteed Mushrooms for Risotto or Orzo

Farmer Jennifer Fresquez recently posted a photo of a mushroom risotto she made from a Deborah Madison recipe in Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone. Her shiitake mushrooms came from Asher Singer of Reyah Sunshine Farm. The risotto looked so delicious that I decided to make the same risotto, and so I bought mushrooms from Asher.

But time got away from me, and I didn’t have time to make the risotto. I did, however, have time to saute the mushrooms according to Madison’s recipe. I enjoyed them with orzo, and felt pleased to come up with quick, simple, and tasty meal.

The Recipe



  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ cup finely diced white onion or shallot
  • 12 – 16 ounces white or portabella mushroojs, thinly sliced
  • 1 large clove garlic, finely chopped
  • Sea salt and freshly milled pepper
  • ½ lemon


  • 5 ½ to 6 ½ cups mushroom stock or commercial stock
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/3 cup finely diced onion or shallot
  • 1 ½ cups Arborio or Carnaroli rice
  • ½ cup dry white wine or Marsala
  • 1/3 to ½ cup cream
  • Salt and freshly milled pepper
  • ½ cup freshly grated parmesan
  • ¼ cup fresh parsley


  1. Heat the butter and oil in a wide skillet, add the white onion, and cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently.  Add the mushrooms, raise the heat, and saute until browned around the edges, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, season with sale and pepper, and squeeze the lemon juice over all. Turn off the heat and set aside.
  2. Have the stock at a simmer. Melt the butter in a wide pot. Add the onion and cook over medium heat to soften, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the rice, stir to coat, and cook for 1 minute. Add the wine and simmer until it’s completely absorbed. Add 2 cups stock, cover, and cook at a lively simmer until it’s absorbed. Begin adding the stock in ½-cup increments, stirring constantly until each addition is absorbed before adding the next one. About halfway through, add the mushrooms. After the last addition, add the cream and stir with more vigor. Taste for sale and season with pepper. Stir in the parmesan and parsley and serve.


    This locally inspired recipe is brought to you by Pam Walker. Pam is an avid home cook, writer, and local farm and food activist who is also a board member of the Santa Fe Farmers’ Market Institute. Thank you, Pam, for helping inspire us to use locally sourced ingredients!