Friday afternoon I was driving from my house to Adam’s new house. I had a bag full of groceries in my car so I could make us this seafood risotto for dinner. So, I’m driving down the interstate, listening to Jason Aldean’s new album on Spotify when I pass In & Out Burger on the side of the road.
Suddenly, nothing in life sounded as good as a fast food hamburger…the type of thing I eat probably only once a year on a road trip. The type of thing that sits in your belly for what feels like days. I know you know exactly what I’m talking about, let’s be real.
I immediately pulled off at the next exit and made a whip around so I could get one, Jason blasting in the background. And let me tell you—it was every bit as delicious as I had imagined it to be in my mind. The key is the sauce!! The In & Out sauce is top notch people. And don’t tell me how it’s made—I don’t even want to know.
After chasing my burger with my yerba mate and destroying all evidence, I continued on to Adam’s house and made this risotto.
Don’t worry. I’m not pregnant—I’m just hungry.
That was weird.
I’ll just say that as delicious as that burger was, I semi-regretted it three hours later when I was a hot sweaty mess on the floor doing abs in yoga class.
Note to self: as a yoga teacher, I probably won’t encourage my students to eat fast food hamburgers three hours before coming to power yoga.
But then I went home and ate this risotto with a glass of Chardonnay and suddenly everything in life made sense again.
If you’ve ever ordered seafood risotto out at a fancy restaurant and wished it could be just that easy to make at home, well guess what? It totally can! Risotto is time consuming but not difficult. In fact, I find standing over a pot of risotto with a wooden spoon in hand, slowly stirring after each addition of stock almost meditative. When else can you completely zone out while cooking?
I used a combination of lump crab meat, bay scallops and shrimp in this, but feel free to omit one or the other if you desire.
I couldn’t resist this plump asparagus from the market the other day! We’ve had such a warm winter here in California that asparagus season is coming about a month early and I’m not complaining! Both the warm weather and the plump early asparagus are just fiiiiiiine with me.
I sliced these bad boys up, quickly blanched them, and then tossed them into the finished dish as well.
The final touch was a big squeeze of lemon, a handful of Parmesan cheese and some fresh minced parsley.
Next time you have a risotto craving…try this! And next time you have a fast food burger craving, try yoga! Amen.
1 cup arborio rice (risotto rice)
1 tbsp olive oil
1 shallot, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup dry white wine (like Chardonnay)
4 cups fish or seafood stock
1/2 6.5oz can lump crab meat
1/2 lb bay scallops
1/2 lb peeled and deveined shrimp, tails removed
1 small bunch asparagus, trimmed and cut on a diagonal into 1.5″ pieces
1/4 cup fresh Italian parsley, minced
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4-1/2 tsp sea salt
Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the shallot and garlic and saute for about three minutes, until soft. Add the rice and toss to coat each kernel with oil.
Add the white wine to the pot and stir. Cook until all the wine has been absorbed—about three minutes.
Now, add the stock—a quarter cup at a time—stirring after each addition and not adding any more until the previous addition has been completely absorbed. It will take about 45 minutes to complete this step but don’t skip it! It will ensure you completely creamy, restuarant-style risotto.
Blanch the asparagus in boiling water for two minutes then drain and run over with cold water. Set aside.
After all the stock has been absorbed into the risotto, turn off the heat. Heat a teaspoon more oil in a non-stick skillet over medium high heat and add the scallops and shrimp. Quickly cook until the shrimp are pink and curled and the scallops are opaque in the center.
Add the shrimp, scallops and half a can of lump crab meat to the risotto, along with minced parsley, grated cheese and sliced asaparagus. Season with salt to taste. Serve each bowl of risotto with a big squeeze of lemon over top.