February 07, 2012

Seafood Risotto w/Shrimp

Remember this photo? 

Yeps, Christmas dinner feast of lobster and hot pot.  Expanding on our lobster feast, I saved the shells and steaming liquid to cook lunch the following day - seafood risotto with bok choy and shrimp. While it's easy, it does take a little time to cook down the lobster broth and then make the actual risotto.  If you don't want to use the broth right away, I still recommend cooking down the broth and freezing so you can use for future recipes! 

Lobster Broth Ingredients
5 cups water
Remaining water you used to steam the lobster (we had a good 2-3 cups remaining)
Lobster shells (the head has the most flavor)
2 celery stalks, chopped into pieces
1/2 onion, cut into large chunks
2 carrots, chopped into pieces, no need to peel
Couple dashes of garlic powder

1. In a very large pot, put all the ingredients together and bring to a boil. Add more water if you need.  Bring down to a medium heat and cook for about 20-30 minutes. Periodically mix the pot so that the shells at the top get their chance at the bottom of the pot in the liquids.  

2. Once done, take off heat and strain so you are left with the beautiful lobster broth!  Put in fridge if you are not using immediately.  As mentioned earlier, this would also be great to freeze and bring out when you need a seafood broth for a pasta or rice dish. If it's too much to use at once, perhaps freeze them in ice cube trays so when you need a boost of seafood flavoring - say to a great bowl of ramen - you can simply toss in a cube or two.

Lobster Risotto
Lobster broth
3 cups arborio rice
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1/2 onion (remaining onion from above)
1/2-1 cup white wine (or whatever you have left)
10 shrimp, thawed and deveined 
Chopped basil
Freshly grated parm. cheese (however much you'd like)

Beware, you'll be using several bowls and pots!

1. Heat up the lobster broth in another large pot until boiling. Here's a neat little trick - since we'll be serving the risotto with shrimp, I cooked the shrimp in the lobster broth first!  I like to likely under cook the shrimp since we'll add it back to the risotto later.  Keep watch of this as the shrimp cook quickly - take out, set aside and turn the heat to medium to keep the broth hot.

2. Heat a large pot with olive oil.  Add the garlic and onion. Cook until onion is fragrant and somewhat clear. Add the rice and give it a cook mix to coat each grain with the oil olive goodness.  

3. Add in the white wine and give it a good ole stir, scrapping up the bits and yum stuff at the bottom of the pot. Turn down to medium high and let this cook until at least half the wine has been absorbed/cooked off.

4. Hope you are not terribly hungry at this time because it will be another 20 minutes or so before this is ready....  Turn down the heat to medium low.  Take two ladle full of broth, add to the rice, stir and watch the grains absorb the broth goodness.  Make sure to continually stir so nothing sticks.  As the liquid disappears, keep adding ladles of the lobster broth until the rice is cooked and you get a creamy goodness mixture.  Don't feel pressured to use all the broth.  Or, if you are low on broth, you can substitute with chicken broth or water - just make sure to warm it up before adding to the rice.
5. If you'd like to serve with veggies, bring another pot of water to a boil. Toss in the bok choy and cook until done - about 5-7 minutes.  Strain and set aside.  Seriously, any veggies will work in my opinion.  We just needed to balance out the overload of carbs....well, as much as we could..even if just a tiny bit.

6. Once the risotto is done, take a quick taste and see if you need additional salt or pepper.  My broth had a naturally salty flavor so I didn't need to add much.  Toss some basil on top and add in the cheese.  
7. Serve in bowls with 2-3 shrimp and some veggies.  Enjoy!

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