Ahhh, Saturday night dinner after a long business trip. I so prefer to stay in and spend time preparing a delicious dinner over a great bottle of vino and great conversation. The shrimp looked wonderfully fresh at the fish market today and I was craving something Italian after a week of food abroad….so risotto it was! Even though a bit time consuming to stir the rice, risotto is so easy to make. Just open a bottle of vino, convince some good friends or family to keep you company, put on some good Italian music and stir away! You may even wish it took longer for the rice to finish! Enjoy!
Shrimp, Spinach and Sun-dried Tomato Risotto
1 ounce sun-dried tomatoes (not packed in oil)
1 cup boiling water
4 cups chicken stock, homemade or low-sodium canned
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
8 ounces shitake mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
2 cups Arborio rice
1 cup dry white wine
1 small bunch fresh spinach, stemmed, cleaned and sliced
1 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 teaspoon fresh grated lemon zest
1 tablespoon chopped Italian parsley
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1 small saucepan to simmer the sun-dried tomatoes (or use small bowl in microwave)
1 large pot to hold simmering stock
1 large saucepot to hold risotto
1. In a small saucepan, simmer the sun-dried tomatoes in the water for about 1 minute until softened. Drain the tomatoes, reserving the liquid. Chop the tomatoes.
2. In a large pot, combine the reserved cooking liquid and the chicken stock. Bring the liquid to a boil. Reduce the heat and keep at a simmer.
3. In the large saucepot over medium heat, heat the olive oil. Add the onion and cook, stirring constantly, until the onion is soft and translucent -about 2 or 3 minutes. Add the sliced mushrooms and cook until soft and liquid is released – another few minutes.
4. Add the rice to the pot and stir until each grain is coated. Add the chopped sun-dried tomatoes. Add in the white wine and simmer until wine is absorbed.
5. Ladle in about 1/2 cup of the simmering chicken broth mixture and stir constantly until most of the liquid is absorbed. Continue adding in stock, 1/2 cup at a time and cook over medium heat until each 1/2 cup ladle is absorbed before adding more. Cook until the rice is tender but still al dente. This should take about 20-30 minutes.
6. Stir in the spinach, shrimp and lemon zest. Stir until shrimp are cooked through – about 5 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.
7. Divide among bowls and sprinkle with parsley. Serve immediately. Enjoy!