September 4, 2008.

One post online about my triumph with wild mushroom “farrotto.” One response from a name I remembered hearing in high school and college, challenging me to a risotto throwdown. That was all it took to spark our relationship.

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To commemorate we cooked mushroom risotto together. Yes, we celebrated on the date. Or would have had we remembered it was the fourth, not the eighth.

This is an absolutely delicious recipe from a beloved cookbook It calls for dried mushrooms steeped in the same broth added to the rice, but I couldn’t resist a few sautéed fresh ones as well to really drive home the woodsy depth of flavor. If you have a local farmers market, experiment with chanterelle, oyster, porcini, or look for beautiful baskets of a favorite stand-by variety.

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Aside from being stunning, it’s creamy, rich and earthy. Romantina — in place of the more traditional Parmigiano-Reggiano— brings a delectable tang. Everything set off by the clean brightness from a splash of wine and lemon juice added to the sautéed mushrooms at the last moment.

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We have a flawless record so far on our team efforts in the kitchen, and this was no exception. Four days late or not, I think we did the recipe that brought us together juctice. And then some.

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