Ben’s Cognac Risotto

  • Serves

    serves 4-6


Ben Gambaro of the Missouri Baking Co. made this unorthodox but delicious risotto for us.


  • 4 Tbsp. butter
  • 15 small white mushrooms, cleaned, trimmed, and quartered
  • 23 cup cognac
  • 34 cup heavy cream
  • 7 cups chicken stock
  • 1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 medium shallots, peeled and minced
  • 1 34 cups arborio rice
  • 13 cup freshly grated parmigiano-reggiano
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley


Step 1

Melt 2 tbsp. butter in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms and sauté until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Add cognac, bring to a boil, and reduce liquid by half, 3-4 minutes. Lower heat to medium, add cream, and simmer 5 minutes. Remove skillet from heat and set aside. Bring stock to a simmer in a medium saucepan over medium heat.

Step 2

Meanwhile, heat remaining 2 tbsp. butter with oil in a deep, heavy medium saucepan over medium heat. Add shallots and cook until soft, about 2 minutes. Add rice and stir to coat with butter and oil. Add simmering stock, 1⁄2 cup at a time, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon. Wait until liquid is almost completely absorbed before adding more. This process will take about 20 minutes. The rice should be just cooked and slightly chewy.

Step 3

Stir in mushroom mixture and parmigiano-reggiano. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve garnished with parsley.

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