Three tasty risotto recipes with seafood as an ingredient
A good risotto always reminds me of one of our favorite places in the world – Tuscany. It was in a typical Tuscan trattoria (San Gimignano) that we actually took notice of the richness and versatility of this dish. While I am not particularly a fan of seafood stews, I do like seafood in a rice dish, whether it be Spanish paella, Portuguese arroz or Italian risotto.
Spanish rice dishes from Barcelona
One of our favorite dishes combining seafood and rice comprises squid in its own ink. A favorite restaurant in Barcelona, Sete Portes, offers a paella dish based on this called arroz negro, or black rice. We have adapted that concept as a risotto dish in which the risotto is cooked traditionally in wine and a stock (preferably seafood stock), then finished in squid ink and covered with sauteed squid.
Lobster rice or risotto
Lobster tail also makes for a very rich risotto dish. We use frozen Maine lobster tails, which are poached in boiling water and then shelled and chopped into small pieces – I prefer lots of small pieces rather than a few big chunks. The rice is cooked first in white wine, followed by stock (in this case the water in which the lobsters were poached). The poached lobster pieces are placed in the rice to finish cooking with a final ladle of stock.
Small scallops are also a perfect complement to risotto. Our favorite recipe comes from the Williams Sonoma Collection of cookbooks dedicated to Risotto. In this recipe the scallops are sautéed in oil, shallots and lemon. The scallops are removed, and the rice is cooked in the oil, followed by white wine and then seafood stock. Add back the scallops and serve with fresh tarragon or dill.
With every risotto recipe, we tend to add a dollop of butter and a few tablespoons of parmesan at the end, cover and let rest for a couple of minutes.