Recipe: Mushroom and Buckwheat Risotto


There’s nothing more comforting and delicious (well, for this editor, anyway!) on a winter’s day/night than a bowl of hearty risotto.

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Here’s an uber-healthy version from The Beauty Chef, Carla Oates, using buckwheat rather than rice:


1 cup buckwheat
60 ml olive oil
1 leek, thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 tsp fresh thyme leaves, plus extra sprigs to serve
350 gm mixed mushrooms, small ones halved, large ones thickly sliced
60 gm finely grated sheep’s pecorino or parmsesan
Large handful coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley, plus extra to serve
Finely grated rind of 1 lemon, juice of ½
Mushroom stock
2 litres filtered water
3 large field mushrooms, broken into large pieces
2 leeks, coarsely chopped
2 heads of garlic, halved
4 thyme sprigs
1 fresh bay leaf
20 gm dried mushrooms


1. To make the mushroom stock, simmer all the ingredients in a large saucepan over medium heat until well-flavoured (about 45 minutes), strain into a clean saucepan (discard or compost the solids) and keep warm over low heat. The stock can be frozen at this point as it’s a great freezer standby.

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2. Rinse buckwheat and set aside. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat, add leek, garlic and thyme, stir occasionally until tender (about 5 minutes), add mushrooms, season to taste and cook until beginning to soften (about 5 minutes). Next, stir in the buckwheat, then add a couple of ladles of mushroom stock, enough to just cover the buckwheat and cook, stirring until absorbed. Season to taste as you cook and continue adding stock like this, stirring until it’s all absorbed before adding more, just as you would when making a risotto. Cook until the buckwheat is just tender but still has a little bite to it (about 25 minutes) – you may not need all the mushroom stock but any left over can be frozen for another use.

3. Stir in the parmesan, parsley, lemon rind and lemon juice, check the seasoning and serve hot, scattered with extra parmesan, parsley and thyme.

Serves 4-6

Carla Oates, aka The Beauty Chef, has been researching, writing and teaching about organic beauty and health for the last 15 years, creating beauty products – as well as gorgeous recipes – from foods in her Bondi Beach kitchen and herbs from her garden. Carla has collaborated with many of Australia’s best chemists, naturopaths and nutritionists on her renowned inner beauty formulas, based on her own recipes.

By Spa+Clinic Team

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