Tomato Mushroom Risotto


Risotto is one of those dishes that I love to make because I never make it the same way. It’s what I love to do as a cook – improvise!

Typically I use butter, aromatics, wine, broth, and finish with cream and/or cheese.

But the add-in options are practically endless. I’ve used chopped tomatoes, grated zucchini, pesto, canned pumpkin, and carrot juice. It all works. I’ve even made risotto with Thai flavors. Who says risotto must only have Italian flavors? Well, some people might, but I’m 63% Italian, so I stand my ground.

There are two reasons that this risotto is unique. One reason is that I’m using tomato powder.

I posted a while back on a book called The Spice Companion, and in it I learned how to make a powder simply from oven-dried tomatoes.

The other special ingredient is mushroom powder, which is a seasoned mixture of ground dried mushrooms. I found the recipe on Tandy Sinclair’s blog called Lavender and Lime.

I didn’t follow her recipe exactly, shown below, only because Tandy included rosemary and thyme and I wanted the mushroom powder more generic in flavor.

My version had garlic pepper, black pepper, white pepper, and cayenne pepper plus salt in a variety of wild dried mushrooms that I ground using a dry blender jar.

So here’s how I made this risotto.

Tomato Mushroom Risotto

3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 shallots, finely diced
1 1/4 cup Arborio rice
Big splash of Riesling or Pinot Gris or Graves
Chicken broth, mildly flavored, approx. 2 1/2 cups
1 heaping tablespoon tomato powder
1 tablespoon mushroom powder
Salt, to taste
Grated Parmesan, optional

Heat butter in medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Add shallots and sauté slowly; don’t allow much browning.

Add the rice and stir well for a minute. All of the grains should be coated with butter.

Add some wine and stir in well.

Then begin adding the broth, a little at a time and stir well after each addition. Stirring is an important part to the resulting creaminess of the risotto.

As you’re continuing to add broth and stir the rice, find that special position on the stove where the liquid isn’t cooking off too fast, but the fire isn’t so low that cooking stops.

When the rice has absorbed just about all of the liquid it can, add the tomato and mushroom powders and stir well.

Continue adding broth, water, or even some cream, until the rice is fully cooked. Taste for salt.

I personally love white pepper in risottos, but I didn’t want it to overpower the tomato and mushroom flavors.

To serve, I added a bit of grated Parmesan. Feta cheese would be good as well.

Plus I sprinkled on a few parsley leaves just for color.

The tomato and mushroom flavors in this risotto really sing. Grilled steak or chicken could be added, or maybe some braised short ribs. But I will always have tomato powder and mushroom powder in my seasoning arsenal.

72 thoughts on “Tomato Mushroom Risotto

  1. Definitely something to have in the pantry repertoire. I wish I had had enough tomatoes to dry this summer. Sigh. Lovely looking risotto. I would eat it as a meal. No steak needed.

    • Oh, it was a horrible gardening summer, wasn’t it. You can actually buy tomato powder. I used to buy powders back when I catered to color things like tortillas and crepes. Stupid me never used them for flavoring!

      • I bought MSG for a specific recipe. I licked my finger and tasted it in isolation so I’d know what it was bringing to the party. I’d tasted that before. Then it hit me that it tastes so similar to mushroom powder. Mushroom powder has that same “I want more of this” effect. But with no downside.

  2. What an interesting recipe! I love the idea of using ground sundried tomatoes and ground mushrooms. I’ve ground up mushrooms before to use as a steak rub, but I can see how they’d work really well in risotto, too! Yum!

    • Exactly! I’ve added the mushroom powder to stews that didn’t contain mushrooms. And recently I made a faux chili and then realized I didn’t have any tomato paste…. enter tomato powder! Worked like a charm.

  3. Who doesn’t love a good risotto? And your mushroom one looks fantastic! I am so interested in your tomato powder. I will have to check out the book. Thanks for all your tips.

    • What funny is that I used to buy a variety of powders, including tomato powder, just for their colors. I’d color dough and make tortillas, then cut into leaf shapes and crisp them up like chips for baked Brie and such back when I catered. But I never used them for their flavors. So silly!

    • Not mustard. Mushroom. I’m sure that’s what you meant…. mustard would definitely do different things to the flavor!!

  4. Hi Mimi – I love the tips on making the dried mushroom and tomato powders! I love risotto and make all kinds – like you 😊.
    Your blog has kept me in good company this week having found myself back in hospital (hence no recent blog from me). Only issue re reading recipes and tips on cooking whilst languishing in a hospital bed is I am itching to get home and do some actual cooking.

  5. I’m with you on risotto; seems to me the only ‘fixed’ thing is attention while cooking. I’ve never heard of mushroom powder but in the past I’ve used mushroom sauce but powder sounds better. I’ll definitely make some now I have your recipe, without the herbs.

  6. Mimi, I love making and eating risotto. For me making risotto is like making a soup, if I don’t write down what I put in it it’s never the same. I’ve never used tomato powder, but I’m intrigued and must make some soon. However, I use dried porcini mushroom powder often. As always, a great post. Thanks Mimi.

    • Well I’m behind on learning about mushroom powder! But it’s fabulous, and quite versatile as you know. Tomato powder is simply ground up dried tomatoes, and just really handy. And you’re right, I’ve never made the same risotto twice. I probably couldn’t even if I wrote down the ingredients!

    • Thanks, Greg. I could have used more tomato powder, but I wanted to keep flavors subtle and not overpowering.

  7. Never heard of tomato powder before, so I’ll definitely be looking into that! I love risotto, and I usually add concentrated vegetable or tomato paste, but the powder sounds really good.

    • That’s funny, cause I don’t think I ever have ordered it in any European country I’ve been to. Maybe just because it’s something I make often. But it’s good! And it’s fun to get creative with it.

  8. I saw the tomato powder on instagram and really liked the idea. I will have to make it. And thanks for the shout out. I love the ingredients you used for the mushroom powder and will try them when I make the next batch :)

  9. Mimi, I’ve heard of mushroom powder, but never tomato powder. I imagine both are magical in a dish like this! I love a good risotto. So comforting to eat, and to cook, actually! And this one is positively gorgeous! Thanks for the inspiration!

  10. Yummy! Nothing like a good risotto recipe. My husband loves all rice dishes and I know he’d be thrilled to see this on the dinner table. Thanks for sharing!

  11. Ah, good. A new risotto recipe for me to try out. As you know Mimi I recently posted one of my first really simple risotto recipes. So I’m still practicing here. You added wine too so this recipe is already at the top of my “must try risotto” list. :-)

  12. I never make risotto very often but it is almost always my go to dish when I visit an Italian restaurant. There is something so comforting about it. Yours here looks so good and is inspiring me to get back in the kitchen and make it again.

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