Sunday, July 8, 2007

Aloha! And welcome back to the blog...

We're back from Hawaii (and a really long break from cooking & the blog)! We had a great time, but it has been fabulous being home again and getting back into the normal swing of things.

Tonight's dish was a shrimp, baby spinach & basil risotto, adapted from Bon Appetit. There's not much wrong with risotto: it's creamy, carb-y and so satisfying. Plus, this one has spinach so it's obviously very healthy. After a couple of mishaps (I'm not naming names, but let's just say that someone came home with the wrong cooking stock...twice), all went well and we were both happy with the end result. I added a teaspoon of red pepper flakes to the recipe below and instead of poaching the shrimp, I sauteed them in the onions for more flavor.

Risotto has an unfortunate reputation for being "hard" and "time consuming" and that's too bad. While it does take a willingness to stir and hang out near the stove top for a half-hour or so, it's actually a pretty simple dish for such a great impact. But enough preaching!

Stephen says: Mmmmm...good jambalaya, honey!
Stephen's rating: 8

Shrimp Risotto with Baby Spinach and Basil
From Bon Appetit

6 cups (about) low-salt chicken broth
1 pound uncooked large shrimp, peeled, deveined
2 tablespoons olive oil
11/2 cups chopped onion
2 large garlic cloves, minced
11/2 cups arborio rice or medium-grain white rice (about 9 1/2 ounces)
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 6-ounce package baby spinach leaves
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
Additional grated Parmesan cheese

Bring 6 cups broth to simmer in medium saucepan. Add shrimp. Turn off heat, cover, and let stand until shrimp are just opaque in center, about 3 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer shrimp to small bowl; cover with foil to keep warm. Cover broth to keep warm.

Heat oil in heavy large saucepan over medium heat. Add chopped onion and sauté until tender, about 5 minutes. Add minced garlic and stir 1 minute. Add rice and stir until edge of rice is translucent but center is still opaque, about 2 minutes. Add wine and cook until wine is absorbed, stirring occasionally, about 2 minutes. Add 3/4 cup chicken broth. Simmer until almost all broth is absorbed, stirring often, about 2 minutes. Continue to add broth, 3/4 cup at a time, until rice is just tender and mixture is creamy, stirring often and allowing almost all broth to be absorbed after each addition, about 25 minutes total. During last 5 minutes, add spinach in 4 batches, stirring and allowing spinach to wilt after each addition. Mix in shrimp, 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, and basil. Season risotto to taste with salt and pepper.

Spoon risotto into shallow bowls and serve, passing additional cheese separately.


Julie said...

We just got back from Maui too! I missed cooking!!!

Kate said...

I'm so sad. I made this and yours looks 100 times better! ;-)

BC said...

Risotto may have the reputation of being hard but my in laws have a secret... (in laws from Milan or risotto central). They use a pressure cooker for the long simmering time. The beginning and end are the same but it saves time.

I've tagged you and hope you'll play along. You can check out my site for the rules and information.

Drop by to say hello.

Lisa Kendrick said...

This looks great! I can't wait to try it.

Great blog!