Riverford Wicked Leeks
Kale and mushroom risotto recipe image

Print Kale and mushroom risotto

This risotto manages to be at once hearty, warming and light. Fennel seeds, balsamic and red wine are a good contrast ot the creamy, earthy notes of the risotto base. You could include chorizo instead of bacon for a spicier flavour, or use finely sliced Savoy cabbage in this instead of kale.


  • 200-300g cavolo nero or red Russian kale (if using cavolo nero, strip the leaves from the stalk, for red Russian, use the finely chopped stalks too)
  • 250ml red wine
  • 1 litre hot chicken or veg stock
  • 2 onions, finely sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 tbsp fennel seeds
  • 50g bacon, chopped (optional for non veggies)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 400g risotto rice
  • 150g mushrooms, cleaned & chopped
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Parmesan cheese or vegetarian alternative
  • Salt & pepper


  1. In a pan of boiling water, blanch the kale for a couple of minutes, drain, refresh in a pan of cold water, drain again and keep to one side. Combine the red wine and stock.
  2. Fry the onions, garlic, fennel seeds and bacon in the oil on a medium heat for 5 minutes. Add the rice and stir until well coated. Turn down the heat and start adding the liquid.
  3. Keep stirring and adding the liquid as it is absorbed by the rice. After about 10-15 minutes add the kale and after a couple more minutes, the mushrooms.
  4. When all the liquid has gone or the rice is done (whichever is sooner) add a splash of balsamic vinegar. Season to taste. Stir in some grated Parmesan to serve.
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