Mock risotto with artichoke florets and button mushrooms


4 people

30-40 minutes

Medium difficulty

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Ingredients for 4 people

1 14.75 ounce jar of Cynara’s Petite Artichoke Hearts

4 cups button mushrooms

320 g orzo pasta

4 cups chicken stock (recipe follows)

1 garlic clove, minced

1 onion, small diced

3 1/4 tablespoons mascarpone cheese

1 cup parmesan cheese, grated

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1/8 cup butter

6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

¼ bunch chives, finely minced


freshly ground black pepper

Chicken stock:

Note: this dish can be made vegetarian if vegetable stock is substituted for chicken stock.

Ingredients for 1 gallon:

2 pounds chicken bones and backs

20 cups water

2 ea onion, roughly cut

2 ea carrot, peeled and roughly cut

2 stalks of celery, roughly cut

2 garlic cloves, whole and smashed

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 bay leaf

10 ea black peppercorns

Drain the Cynara Artichokes and cut them in half lengthwise through the stem of the flower so that it maintains its form and structure. Cut the button mushrooms in halves or quarters (depending on their size) so that they are uniform in size with the petite artichokes. Reserve the two separately.

In a medium size pot, heat up 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil over medium heat. Add the minced garlic and once it starts to become fragrant, add the minced onion. Season the onion and garlic with a teaspoon of salt. Let the onion and garlic cook for about 10-15 minutes, or until soft and translucent.

While the onion and garlic are cooking, heat a separate sauté pan with 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium-high heat. Once heated, add the artichokes to the sauté pan with the button mushrooms. Season with a pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper. Sauté both ingredients together for roughly 5 to 7 minutes until they are golden brown and fragrant. Reserve.

Add 2 cups of the chicken stock to the onion and garlic mixture and bring up to a boil. Once boiling, add the orzo pasta and stir frequently with a wooden spoon. Depending on the brand of the orzo pasta, the cooking time could vary between 9-11 minutes for al dente. During this time add more chicken stock as necessary. At the end of the cooking time the pasta should be almost dry of stock, with a few tablespoons of starchy stock left to finish the pasta. 

Finish the mock risotto by adding the mascarpone cheese, the Parmesan cheese, fresh lemon juice, butter, 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil and the chives. Stir well to incorporate all the ingredients and emulsify with the little amount of starchy stock left over from cooking the pasta. Add the sautéed artichokes and button mushrooms and mix well. Some of the sautéed artichokes and button mushrooms can be reserved to garnish the top of the mock risotto as well. Taste and adjust for seasoning and serve. 

In a large stockpot, sauté the vegetables, aromatics and spices in olive oil for 5-10 minutes or until the vegetables are soft and translucent. Separately wash the chicken bones and backs in cold water. Add them to the stockpot and cover with the water. Bring up to a simmer and skim the surface for any impurities when necessary. Let simmer for 3 hours. Strain through a fine mesh sieve and use as directed or cool and reserve under refrigeration for up to three days.


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