KITCHEN BITCH: Mushroom Risotto MAVIS LINNEMANN My little black truffle: You knew I had to come back to it. It’s like a little black dress—it just keeps giving time and time again. I can’t receive a black truffle for Christmas from my good friend Ian Adams and only give KB readers one simple but insanely delicious recipe for baked eggs with black truffles, now can I? Nope, the black truffle brings a flavorful punch to other foods besides eggs. Because of its fragrant, pungent aroma and delicate nature, it’s best used raw or mixed into a cooked dish at the last second. It didn’t take me long to decide what dish I wanted to use the truffle for next—the Italian classic, mushroom risotto. A tuber that grows underground near the roots of a certain species of oak, black truffles are closely related to mushrooms, their fungal cousin. As such, their earthy flavors work and play well together, and risotto is their perfect meeting place.Risotto refers to the cooking method, not to the rice itself. The rice used in risotto is most often Arborio, which you can find in pretty much any grocery store these days in the ‘ethnic’ or Italian aisle. Canaroli is the more expensive and often preferred grain of rice in Italy, although I don’t think I’ve seen it here. These rice varieties are short or medium grain and have the ability to absorb large amounts of liquid and to release starch, which is what make risotto so much creamier than other rice dishes.  MORE

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