Oh man, do I love me some risotto. I've written about my mushroom risotto before - a luscious, unctuous concoction that is heaven by itself but makes sweet, sweet love to things like lamb. Can't always make the same old thing, though...and one of the great thing about risotto is that it really gets along well with pretty much anything you want to mix into it. This weekend, we decided that a seafood risotto would pair perfectly with our stuffed peppers - so seafood it was. The one slight difference with a seafood risotto is that traditionally, Italians don't put cheese in it. (I won't tell if you do, though...so go ahead and maybe stash some on the table just in case :) ).
Any type of seafood would probably work here - scallops, squid, lobster...whatever you like. Just make sure it's cooked before you stir it in, since you're not really cooking it in the rice.
Crab and Shrimp Risotto
loosely based on a Williams-Sonoma recipe
1 large garlic clove, finely chopped
6 Tbs. olive oil
3/4 lb. small or medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
3/4 lb. fresh-cooked crabmeat, picked over to remove any shell fragments
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
2 cups seafood or fish stock
4 - 6 cups chicken stock
3 shallots, finely chopped
1 tablespoon butter
2 cups medium-grain rice (arborio or carnaroli)
1/2 cup dry white wine (warmed)
1/4 cups chopped fresh herbs - flat-leaf parsley, basil, chives pictured...or use your favorites !
In a saute pan over medium heat, sauté the garlic in half of the olive oil, stirring once or twice, until the garlic is fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the shrimp, season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring, until the shrimp are just about done, 3 -4 minutes. Gently stir in the crabmeat, and set aside.
Mix the broths together in a saucepan, and bring just barely to a simmer.
In a large saucepan or risotto pan over medium heat, warm the remaining oil along with the butter until the butter melts. Add the shallots and sauté until tender and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the rice and cook, stirring, until the kernels are hot and coated with oil, about 2 minutes. Add the wine and continue to cook, stirring often, until the liquid is absorbed.
Add the broth a ladleful at a time, stirring constantly and making sure the liquid has been absorbed before adding more. When the rice is about half cooked, stir in the herbs, salt and pepper and lower the heat a bit. The risotto is done when the rice grains are creamy on the outside and firm yet tender to the bite, 30 - 40 minutes total. Rice varies, so you may not need all of the broth.
Stir in the shrimp and crabmeat and cook, stirring gently, just until heated through, about 2 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasonings.
Remove the risotto from the heat and serve immediately.
Serves 6 to 8.