Saturday, June 23

Baby's First Risotto!

How have I reached the age of 30 without ever making a risotto? Probably because I am afraid of cooking rice. I always over-boil it, even if I time it, and it turns to mush.

Sitting in the freezer were some lovely scallops and prawns and I wanted to do them justice; cooking them simply with very simple flavours. Risotto just seemed right.

Being a kitchen MAVERICK I followed a recipe for a completely different risotto to the one I was making (pea and pancetta), just to get the technique. This is how I did it:

Scallop and Prawn Risotto

300g risotto rice
750 ml chicken/fish stock
150ml white wine
Big double handful giant prawns
Big handful scallops
Zest and juice of 2 lemons
50g butter
1 clove garlic
Bunch spring onions - chopped
Handful parsley - chopped

1. Shell the jumbo prawns and remove the veins (actually their digestive tract but, oh well). This is LONG, but it stops them from being gritty. Shelling prawns is really easy, twist the heads off (WARNING: brain juice will explode on your fingers), remove the legs and peel the shell off from the bottom up. I leave the shell on the tails cos it's pretty and they do it in posh restaurants. Take a sharp paring knife and cut down the prawn's back, you'll see a manky brown/black vein. Pull it out. Wash the prawns and put in a bowl in the fridge.

2. Fry the garlic, lemon zest and spring onions in the butter for approx 2 mins until soft.

3. Add the rice and cook in the butter mix for 2 mins, stirring constantly (this bit FRIGHTENED me, I kept expecting it to pop/explode or burn - told you I was afraid of rice).

4. Add the white wine and boil, stirring constantly, for 2 mins. This bit smells lovely.

5. Add the stock, a bit at a time, as the rice absorbs it gradually (or you can chuck it all in, I suppose, I got bored halfway through and did just that). This process should take about 20 mins. After that time the risotto is more or less done. Stir it regularly to prevent the bottom burning.

6. About 5-6 mins from the end fry off the scallops. Put the raw prawns into the risotto. Stir.

7. At the end add the scallops, lemon juice, parsley and seasoning and serve. Nice.

I'd add a picture here but I ate it too quickly. Soz.

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