No matter how I spend my weekend I always want to end it with a hearty meal to prepare for the week ahead. Risotto is the perfect meal that seems super fancy and filling but is really not that hard to make. Once you have the technique down you can use it as a blank canvas and add anything you want/have (see https://singleinthecitykitchen.com/2015/12/09/red-risotto/)! As I have mentioned before you can’t go wrong with garlic, lemon and shrimp so I have created a risotto using just that!
1/2 yellow onion, minced
3 slices of pancetta chopped
1 tbs of olive oil
1/2 a cup arborio rice (this might seem like a little but it grows! This is more than enough for one person)
1/2 cup dry white wine
3/4 box of chicken broth
1 cup asparagus (chopped into bite sized pieces)
7 frozen shrimp, thawed and peeled (or however many you plan to eat in one serving)
2 cloves of garlic minced
1tbs of butter
Juice of 1 lemon
Pecorino cheese for plating
Salt, pepper, crushed red pepper for seasoning to taste
Start by chopping up your onion and pancetta. Coat large skillet with olive oil and turn on medium heat. Add onion and pancetta, season with s&p and crushed red. Cook until onions are soft and the fat in the pancetta is starting to render out. Add arborio rice to the pan and stir to coat in the oil. Once everything is coated add the white wine. Continue stirring.
Once the wine has cooked out and the rice as absorbed the liquid add chicken broth a little bit at a time (about a ladle full). Continue to stir and wait until the broth has absorbed before adding more.
While you are tending to your rice you can also roast your asparagus. Now you could just blanch it or cook it in the risotto but I prefer the roasted flavor. Chop asparagus into bite sized pieces, drizzle with olive oil, season with salt and pepper and roast in the oven (or in my case toaster oven) at 350 for 15 mins.
Once the risotto is just about done (tender, not mushy but not hard) you can start on your shrimp. In a smaller, separate pan add butter and drizzle of olive oil on medium heat. Add in garlic first and then add the shrimp. Toss shrimp around in the butter/oil until the shrimp turn pink. Once they are pink they are done! Turn off heat and squeeze the juice of one whole lemon into the pan.
Transfer everything from the shrimp pan into the risotto pan (make sure to get all the juice and garlic) as well as the roasted asparagus. Stir everything together. Once plated, shave a little bit of pecorino cheese on top. Serve with a glass of white wine on the side!
My cat, Colby-Jack trying to see what this risotto is all about (don’t worry he didn’t eat it)