This blogpost also is available in German.
Helloooo, we`re back in town after our trip to Berlin and I’m back with a new post as well. Today I finally share the long promised recipe for a mushroom risotto. Autumn may seem grey and dreary, but it produces countless tasty products, such as mushrooms. Seasonal cooking is a lot of fun, even during fall and winter. And if we`re talking mushrooms… In my social media channels, a question has come up again and again. And it has led to lively discussions. Namely the question: Are mushrooms vegan? In addition to the autumnal risotto recipe that I share with you today, I would like to briefly explain my position on this question.
What are mushrooms?
In evolutionary terms, mushrooms are neither animals nor plants. They belong to the group of eukaryotic organisms. They share similarities with both the plant and animal kingdoms. They`re sedentary, like plants. But they cannot photosynthesize. Like animals, they feed on organic materials. According to current knowledge, however, fungi are more closely related to animals.
Mushrooms are also regarded as the social network of the forest. By forming a thread-like network of mycelia under the soil, they enable trees and plants to communicate with each other and exchange nutrients. The fungi live in symbiosis with the plants. They feed on their carbohydrates and in return supply their hosts with water and nutrients.
Some compare this “mushroom network” with nerve cells as we own them. Studies even seem to have shown that fungi can feel certain feelings like fear and pain. Clearly not in the same way as humans and animals. There we have the dilemma!
Are mushrooms vegan?
The question seems to occupy some of you. I wasn’t aware of it because the answer is so clear to me that I never thought about it. A few discussions and a little research may not make me smarter, but I remain steadfast in my view; mushrooms are vegan.
Whether or not mushrooms are vegan for you depends on how you define the term “living being. From my point of view and in weak memory of my biology lecture, plants, animals, humans and mushrooms are living beings. However, I can live with the fact of eating plants and mushrooms. They have neither a brain, nor the same emotions as animals or humans. Therefore; yes mushrooms are vegan! In addition, you only eat the fruit body of the mushroom anyways and not the actual mushroom, which is underground. You can read more about this here.
Who describes vegan mushrooms as not vegan, should not eat plants at all from my point of view. Because who tells you that plants don’t have feelings as well? Do you understand what I mean? You can spin this scenario infinitely further. Then it’s best not to breathe or live, because everywhere around us there are microorganisms that we kill every single day without even being aware of it *lol*!
That’s why my motto is: Don’t make your life unnecessarily difficult! Eat lot`s of mushrooms without a guilty conscience, they are vegan.
Back to the mushroom risotto…
After we have clarified this question, it`s time to enjoy this delicious risotto without remorse… It`s super creamy and the shot of white wine makes the risotto really hearty. For me, white wine should always be added to the risotto, if it isn`t your thing, you can also omit it. When choosing the mushrooms I leave you free choice. I chose chanterelles, shiitake, king oyster and pleutorus. Chanterelles are still in season until the end of October and king oyster until December. However, many mushrooms can also be cultivated all year round.
Have fun cooking and see you soon
- 2 tbsp olive oil organic
- 1 onion organic
- 250 g risotto rice organic
- 200 ml white wine organic
- 500 ml vegetable broth organic
- Pepper to taste, organic
- 200 g mixed mushrooms shiitake, pleutorus, king oyster, organic
- 100 g chanterelles organic
- approx. 200 ml water
- 1-2 tbsp nutritional yeast organic
- Clean mushrooms. Cut 2/3 of the mushrooms into small pieces, leave the rest whole.
- Peel the onion and chop finely.
- Heat the vegetable stock.
- Heat olive oil in a pan, sauté onions and risotto rice for about 2 minutes.
- Deglaze with white wine, reduce heat a little. Add the warm vegetable stock and simmer the risotto. Stir regularly.
- Keep warm water ready, if there is not enough liquid, always add some warm water to the risotto.
- After about 15 minutes add the mushrooms. Cook the risotto until it is done.
- Shortly before serving, add the yeast flakes and serve warm.