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Fiddlehead Fern Risotto

This Week's Challenge: Video Games

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Fiddlehead Fern Risotto

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Today we are heading out of the kitchen and into Stardew Valley for some of the most relaxing simulated home cooking around.

Fiddlehead ferns can be found in Stardew Valley in the Secret Woods just beyond the Wizard's Tower. In real life, fiddlehead ferns can be foraged in the early spring! I actually had no idea that fiddlehead ferns existed in real life until I randomly saw them at my grocery store - that was the first and only time I’ve ever seen fiddlehead ferns.

Fiddleheads sort of remind me of cross between asparagus and okra - or maybe spinach and mushrooms. Texture wise they are closer to asparagus with their snap and crunch but they have a more earthy flavor that gives off hints of nuttiness. It’s definitely one of the more unique flavors I’ve tried.

Remember to season the dish as you go - we definitely do not want our risotto to be bland like it apparently is in Stardew Valley.

Move over queen of sauce, there’s a new cook in town.

For this recipe we are using aborio rice, which is usually what risotto is made from. The game for some reason doesn’t realize that rice is literally the main component of risotto. I’m really starting to not trust that the queen of sauce actually knows how to cook anything...

One of the most important elements of a risotto is the cheese. Most traditional risotto will use parmesan cheese - but for this recipe, we’re going to use an iridium grade cheese called gruyere. You can typically find this at any Joja mart  or Pierres Specialty Stores - usually the cheap shredded variety works best.

I went back into the game and added up all my play times between my PC and mobile versions and I’ve played over 300 hours of Stardew Valley - the fact that I’m not sick of it yet should give you some indication on how much I love this game. Being able to make a recipe from Stardew Valley was a ton of fun, especially playing out the recipe in the game as well as in real life. If this is something you guys enjoyed and would like to see more of, let me know which recipes from Stardew you’d like to see me make next!

Categories: Fictional Feasts , Video Recipes , Stardew Valley

Tags: Fiddlehead Fern , Risotto , Gruyere , Rice

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Fiddlehead Fern Risotto

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 30-45 minutes

Makes 4 servings

Ingredients:

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  • 1 lb fiddlehead ferns, washed and blanched
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil OR salted butter
  • 3 tablespoons garlic, minced
  • 4 cups beef broth
  • 1 cup aborio rice
  • 1 cup gruyere cheese
  • salt & pepper, to taste

Here's How:

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  1. Throughly wash the fiddleheads in cold water. Bring a pot of water to a boil. Meanwhile, prepare an ice bath. When the water is bubbling, blanch the fiddleheads for 10-15 minutes, until 'al dente' then remove from the water and blanch in the ice bath to stop the cooking process. Remove the fiddleheads from the ice bath and pat dry.
  2. In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium high heat. Add the fiddleheads to the skillet and saute for 5-6 minutes, until the fiddleheads are tender. Add the minced garlic to the skillet and saute until fragrant, another 2-4 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Remove the fiddleheads and garlic from the skillet, leaving behind a bit of the oil.
  3. Spread the aborio rice over the skillet in an even layer. Heat, stirring occasionally, until the rice is coated in the oil and beginning to brown and pop.
  4. Pour in the beef broth a quarter cup at a time. Let the liquid come to a rapid boil, stirring every few minutes until the liquid is mostly absorbed into the rice before adding the next quarter cup. Continue to add the broth, one quarter cup at a time, over the course of 30-40 mintues - until the rice is cooked through. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  5. Repeat adding the broth until the rice is saturated and tender (not chewy). The rice will 'reject' the additions of broth after a certain point and begin to form a brown sauce.
  6. Add the gruyere to the skillet and stir into the rice until melted. When most of the liquid has thickened, return the fiddlehead and garlic mixture back to the skillet. Fold the fiddlheads into the risotto. Let the fiddleheads return to serving temperature. Scoop into small bowls and enjoy after the summer harvest.

Mouth Feel

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Salty

Savory

Sour

Bitter

Sweet

Spicy

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