Risotto was a highlight of our trip. A seafood risotto in Venice is one the the finer things in life. We thought we would try to make our own version.
We followed two different recipes. One had a great process description and the other had the ingredients that we wanted to use. The first we used was a process description that we found in our Lidia Bastianich cookbook and the other was the recipe from fine cooking. We just googled based on ingredients we had and found this one from fine cooking.
Gather the following ingredients:
5 - cups of chicken stock
1.5 - cup of peas
2 - cups dried mushrooms
2 - tablespoons butter
1 - med yellow onion
2 - cups of arborio rice
0.3 - cup dry white wine
1 - cup of grated parmigiano reggiano
1 - tablespoon of balsamic vinegar
1.5 - teaspoons of chopped parsley
1 - pound of shrimp
this serves at least 4. We had A LOT of leftovers.
The process is complicated. Let's step though it in execution...
First we reconstituted the mushrooms
and heated the chicken stock that we made and froze earlier in the year.
Then strained the mushrooms and added the mushroom juice to the stock
We melted the butter and added the chopped onion. Cook until onions are golden and coated with oil but not brown.
Add a half cup of stock to slow the process.
Once cooked down, pour in the rice all at once and stir to coat the rice with oil. Stirred until it was popping as we stirred.
After 3 minutes at med heat add the wine
Then start ladling in the stock and add the mushrooms. Stir until the liquid is cooked down to the point your spoon leaves a clean track on the bottom of the pan.
Continue to stir in a ladle full at a time. Let it cook down/absorb into the rice before adding another
Go ahead a pour a big glass of wine for this effort. It is probably 25 minutes of stirring. It is hot work. A man needs to stay hydrated.
After the rice gets to the point that it has a nice bite (soft but not a gel) add in the cheese
Then add the peas and balsamic at the end.
In the mean time on the BGE
We tossed our whole Georgia fresh shrimp in olive oil and smoked paprika. We used 25s (That is shrimp lingo for 25 shrimp per pound people).
Then on the grill for just a few minutes at 400. Direct heat.
Skewered the shrimp and cooked for 2 minutes each side then closed down for 2 more minutes.
Then pull them off and plate on the risotto.
You are officially Venetian with Georgia flair!
A great process and a great flavor but a few things we would change. First, it was too thick and that was particularly pronounced after adding the cheese. Next time, we would skip adding the cheese. Not only did the cheese thicken the risotto too much it also masked the flavor of the peas and rice and mushrooms which had a nice flavor before we stirred in so much cheese. Too strong. Also, consider the carryover. The risotto should be a little thin because it will continue to thicken so plan for that. Cook it a little thinner and less or no cheese.
Also, peel the shrimp ahead of time. While it doesn't present as well, it is more practical and friendly.
Standby, we will be making this again and updating our recipe and process. This is a great example of exactly the sort of thing that caused us to start this web site. Next time we will simply improve this process and document.
Please help support our site, buy something you like on Amazon. Simply click through the links below and though you can pick anything, I suggest the thermometer and knives below:
So apparently Thermoworks doesn't sell through Amazon anymore. You must buy direct. Still the thermometer to have. Go here and order direct.
Aaron Franklin's Favorite trimming knife:
Dexter-Russell (S131F-6PCP) - 6" Boning Knife - Sani-Safe Series
Aaron Franklin's Favorite Brisket cutting/serving knife:
Sani-Safe S140-12SC-PCP 12" Scalloped Roast Slicer