MAGIC MUSHROOMS

Men's Health South Africa|June 2020

MAGIC MUSHROOMS
The humble mushroom is anything but; these nutrient powerhouses are super-versatile, come in all shapes and sizes and pack a serious umami punch. Use these simple recipes to upgrade mealtime, every time.
LUKE BENEDICTUS
VEGAN LEMON AND MUSHROOM RISOTTO

SERVES

4 OLIVE OIL

1 LARGE BROWN ONION, FINELY CHOPPED

1 CUP ARBORIO (RISTOTTO) RICE

1 CUP WHITE WINE

250G SHIITAKE (OR BROWN) MUSHROOMS, SLICED

4 CLOVES GARLIC, MINCED THYME LEAVES

750ML TO ONE LITRE VEGETABLE STOCK

150G EXOTIC MUSHROOMS, LIKE SHIMEJI, SLICED OR SEPARATED, AS NEEDED

1 LEMON 2 TSP NUTRITIONAL YEAST PINCH CHILLI FLAKES

SALT AND FRESHLY GROUND BLACK PEPPER

½ CUP PINE NUTS, TOASTED

1/ In a large, deep saucepan set over medium heat, add one tablespoon olive oil and the chopped onion. Sauté until translucent and soft.

2/ Add the risotto rice and stir for one minute before adding the white wine.

3/ In a separate large wok or pan set over high heat, add one tablespoon olive oil. When very hot, add the sliced shiitake mushrooms. Sauté for a couple minutes then add half the garlic and a few thyme leaves. Sauté until fragrant and the mushrooms are golden on the edges.

4/ While stirring the risotto rice, add a quarter cup of vegetable stock every few minutes until the rice is cooked (you might not need to use all the stock).

All types of edible mushrooms contain varying degrees of protein and fibre. They also contain B vitamins as well as a powerful antioxidant called selenium, which helps prop up the immune system and prevent damage to cells and tissues.

Mushrooms will help you build (serious) mental muscle. Two antioxidants (ergothioneine and glutathione) may help prevent Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s, says research from Penn State University. A 2019 study from the National University of Singapore found that eating two threequarter cup servings of cooked mushrooms per week may reduce your odds of cognitive decline. Whip up this quick dish to snag the benefits.

5/ Stir the cooked shiitake mushrooms into the risotto mixture.

6/ Place the now-empty mushroom pan back over high heat. Add another drizzle of olive oil and sauté the exotic mushrooms for a couple minutes before adding the remaining garlic and some thyme. Once cooked, set aside.

7/ Meanwhile, add some lemon zest (reserve some spirals for garnishing) and a good squeeze of lemon juice to the risotto. Stir in the nutritional yeast and chilli flakes, then season to taste with salt and pepper.

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June 2020