This is one of my favourite comfort foods! A versatile one-pot meal that still looks and tastes a million bucks!
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 chicken breast, cut in small cubes
- 1 medium brown onion, chopped finely
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- Handful of white mushrooms. chopped
- Small handful of dried funghi porcini (soak in hot water to hydrate along with the black fungus)
- Small handful of black fungus (wood ear mushrooms), chopped
- 450g Arborio rice (risotto rice)
- 1.25ltr chicken stock
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- Ground black pepper
- Grated Parmesan cheese
- Chopped Parsley
Heat a large saucepan, add olive oil and knob of butter. Fry the chicken for minute or two and then add the onions. Saute until transparent and add the garlic, thyme and all the mushrooms. Cook for a further 2 minutes and add in the rice. Turn up the heat and stir well so that nothing sticks to the bottom. Pour in the white wine and keep stirring until all the alcohol has evaporated.
In the meantime make sure that the chicken stock boiling and at hand.
Add the stock to the rice a ladle at a time, stirring constantly until all liquid is absorbed before adding more stock. Turn the heat to medium and continue until the rice is cooked and smelling wonderful. Don't forget to keep stirring!
Turn off the heat and add some butter on top (if you wish), grated Parmesan cheese, pepper and parsley. Cover pan and leave to rest for a minute or two before serving.
According to Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioners, black fungus can enrich and activate blood, purify lungs and intestines, etc. Its applications include anemia, haematemesis, uterine bleeding, hemorrhoid, high blood pressure, coronary heart disease, and even cancer prevention. Studies show that people who eat black fungus regularly tend to have a normal blood viscosity—a similar result as to use aspirin—not to mention these people are at lower risk of developing cardiovascular disease.
Since black fungus carries a compound called polysaccharide, this vegetable not only inhibits tumor growth and prevents cancer, it also neutralizes the side effects of chemotherapy and radiation. Last but not the least, black fungus also is a good “adsorbent” and “scavenger” thanks to its pectin that can adsorb dust in lungs and digestive system and then excrete together.
Indeed, whether you are a vegetarian or a meat-lover, eating black fungus has a mile-long list of benefits, yet requires only an inch-long list of cooking steps. Want to have black fungus on your dinner table tonight? Simply try the recipe above!