Tag Archives: asparagus

This ain’t no rice-a-roni…Risotto Tonight

19 Apr

I know I’ve posted before about my love of risotto. I make it a lot when Ryan is out of town. This is because I prefer it with seafood and he’s not a huge seafood guy. In Venice, where risotto is famous, it is always flavored with seafood. Maybe that’s why I like seafood when I make this creamy rice dish. But I digress…

Risotto is a rich creamy dish that doesn’t have any cream in it. It is the starch in the Arborio rice that releases into the stock that creates the texture. When I make risotto I call it the zen of risotto. It’s a finicky thing to make this dish. You have to constantly stir the rice in order to get the right creaminess. If you don’t stir enough, the rice will not release the starch correctly and you’ll wind up with rice soup. Here’s the recipe:

Risotto with greens and shrimp

6 medium shrimp, peeled, deveined and cooked
1/3 cup arborio rice
2 cups chicken or seafood stock
2 cups arugula, chopped
3/4 cups asparagus, cut into 1 inch pieces
1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
3 small cloves garlic
1/4 cup pecorino romano, grated
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

Add the oil to a hot pan and then add in the garlic. Let the garlic cook until you can smell it. Then add the rice and stir to coat each grain with the oil. Add in a 1/4 cup of the stock and stir. Continue to stir the rice, adding in the remaining stock in 2 oz intervals. Only add the next addition after the previous has been absorbed by the rice. When the rice is tender and there is no more stock remaining, add in the greens, lemon zest and juice. Stir to combine. Plate according to the picture and garnish with chopped parsley.

Always thinking of the next meal


Rockfish dinner

19 Nov

Tonight, the game plan was to pick up some mussels and try to recreate one of my favorite dishes from Bonefish, their version of mussels. When I arrived at the seafood counter after work, I was told that mussels would not be coming in until tomorrow and that the one remaining bag had been in the store since November 8. Ok, next choice, little neck clams. I thought I would make the same sauce recipe, but just use clams. Seemed simple enough, however, the clams were $10.50 for 24 clams. That seemed pretty high for a dinner for one, so what now?

I noticed that they had a beautiful looking piece of rockfish. I have never had rockfish, but I thought what the heck. I picked up a 6 oz portion for 6 dollars and felt like I could still make the sauce work.

What I wasn’t expecting was one of the best meals I’ve had in a long time. The dish wound up being seared rockfish with buerre blanc over roasted asparagus. Seriously, it’s not often that I toot my own horn, but are you looking at the picture? It was amazing!

Want to give this one a try? It is actually very simple. First, you don’t have to use rockfish. You can use any fish that you like including shrimp or scallops. Simply season and sear in hot oil. For the asparagus, drizzle with oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast in the oven for 15 minutes at 375 degrees. The coup de grace, the sauce.

Buerre blanc is classic French butter sauce. It’s made by reducing shallots and wine together and then slowly wisking in small pieces of cold butter until the sauce is thick and flavorful. Traditionally, white wine is used in the reduction, but you can really use any wine that you like. If you like a red, then the sauce becomes, buerre rouge. It’s the same concept just a different color. Buerre blanc does take a little practice to perfect. You don’t want the sauce to break and just become melted butter. The consistency should be nappe or thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.

I garnished with diced tomatoes and basil chiffonade. But again, you can use whatever you like.

Always thinking of the next meal