Black garlic risotto is an umami bomb full of deep rich flavors that come from the black garlic, porcini mushrooms, and aged parmesan. All three are umami rich ingredients that help the risotto’s earthy flavors linger on your palate.
Black garlic is garlic that has been fermented, giving it a sweeter flavor and gummier texture than regular garlic. It’s an intriguing ingredient that brings subtle, complex flavors to dishes.
This Black Garlic Risotto recipe was created to be delicious and to help people understand umami as a flavor. If you’re interested in learning more about what umami is and how to incorporate more umami flavor into your cooking, read Everything You Need to Know About Umami.
The risotto highlights three ways ingredients can develop their umami flavors: fermentation enhances the garlic’s umami flavors while drying concentrates the porcini’s, and aging allows the parmesan to develop its umami characteristics over time.
We generally use chicken stock for this recipe, which can be replaced with a good vegetable stock to make the dish vegetarian.
The black garlic we prefer has large cloves, which are easier to work with than black garlic cloves made with regular sized garlic. In general 2 large cloves or 6 small cloves are equal to the 2 tbsps used in this recipe. You can buy black garlic in Umami’s Market.
Making Black Garlic Risotto
- 1-1/2 cups Arborio rice
- 1 cup dried porcini mushrooms
- 1-1/2 cups cremini mushrooms, diced
- 1/2 cup shallot, divided
- 2 tbsp black garlic, minced & divided
- 2-1/2 cups chicken stock
- 1 cup aged parmesan
- 2 oz goat cheese
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tbsp butter, divided
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- Start by bringing 2-1/2 cups of chicken stock and 2 cups of water to a simmer, turn the heat off and add the dried porcini and let them soak for at least 30 minutes. This helps produce a rich stock that adds umami flavor to the risotto.
- While the mushrooms are soaking, mince the shallots and garlic and dice the cremini mushrooms into bites sized pieces.
- After the porcini have finished soaking take them out of the pot and dice into bite sized pieces. Before starting the risotto, warm the stock over low heat.
- On high heat, sauté 1/4 cup of shallots in the olive oil and 1 tbsp of butter, continue stirring to make sure not to burn the shallots. After a couple of minutes add the rice, continue stirring until the rice is toasted, usually 3 to 4 minutes.
- Turn the heat down to medium and start adding the stock a couple of ladles at a time, stirring continuously, waiting until almost all the liquid has been absorbed before adding more stock.
- When half the stock has been incorporated, add the porcini mushrooms and 1-1/2 tbsps of black garlic. Continue working the stock into the risotto, when almost all the stock has been absorbed, usually around 20 minutes, add the parmesan and goat cheeses, salt, and pepper.
- In a separate pan, use 1 tbsp of butter to sauté the cremini mushrooms with the remaining shallot and black garlic. When the mushrooms have finished sautéing, stir half of them into the risotto.
- To serve black garlic risotto ladle the risotto into a shallow bowl and top with the remaining sautéed mushrooms and a little shredded parmesan.