Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Lobster Risotto

Listen, I'm a single mom on a budget.  I gotta rob Peter to pay Paul every month.

However, I'm a girl who likes to eat (obviously).  Further, I'm a girl who likes to eat GOOD.  One of the only drawbacks of being single, is to not have some poor schlep buying my dinner every once in a while.  LOL  (oops, did I just give away that I like free dinner from schleps?)

I'm kind of o.k. with paying bills instead of other chefs, cause I can just about make anything my little heart desires.

Hence, the lobster risotto.  I can't be buying enough lobster to feed me and my teenage dumpster, but I CAN afford a nice 1 1/2 lb lobster to make one of my favorite dishes, risotto.

If you love lobster, this is absolutely heavenly.  The sweet pieces of lobster with the rich risotto and the tang from the grape tomatoes go together like Buzz and Woody.

Don't be afraid to try this.  Don't be afraid to indulge.  You deserve it!


Lobster Risotto

Serves:  4
Prep Time:  15 minutes
Cook Time:  50 minutes

Ingredients:

FOR LOBSTER:
1 1/2 lb lobster
4-5 cups of water, or enough to cover lobster
small bunch of fresh parsley
small bunch of fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
1 TBSP black peppercorns
3 cloves garlic, smashed
1 onion, quartered
2 stalks celery, rough chopped
2 carrots, rough chopped
1 1/2 TBSP salt

FOR RISOTTO:
2 TBSP butter
1 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
1 small onion, minced finely
1 clove garlic, minced finely
1 1/2 cups arborio rice
1/2 cup of white wine
Lobster Stock - use the homeade stock you boiled the lobster in
1 Tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
1 tsp fresh basil, chopped
1/2 cup or so of grape tomatoes, halved
2 TBSP butter
1/2 cup parmiggiano reggiano
salt and pepper to taste

Method:

Let's start out by handling the lobster stock.  I start with 4 cups of water and add another cup after I put the lobster in if I have to.

In a large steam pot, bring everything but the lobster to a boil.

While the lobster stock is coming to a boil, pop Larry the Lobster into the freezer for about 5-8 minutes to chill him out, literally.

Ok, are you ready?  We have to do something nasty now.  We have to walking dead this lobster.  Take the tip of your knife and place it in the center of the head.  Push down and then bring it forward, essentially cutting his head in half.  This sounds gruesome, but I swear it's more humane than being boiled alive.  You basically put him out of his misery.  Calm down.  You'll forget about it in about 35ish minutes when you're eating him.  Anyway.........

Cut the rubberbands of the killer claws of death and place Larry into the boiling water.  For a 1 1/2 lb lobster, you should boil him for about 20 minutes or until the shell is bright fire engine red.

Now, let's break down the lobster.  If you have never done this you can check out this tutorial (Breaking Down a Lobster).  Place lobster meat in a bowl in a warm area.

Throw the shells back into the lobster stock and bring it back to a boil while you prep the risotto ingredients.

Mince your onion and garlic.  Set aside.  Chop the herbs and combine into a small bowl.  Set aside.  Slice the tomatoes.  Set aside.

Strain the lobster stock, put it back into the pan and keep it on a low simmer.

In a wide, heavy bottom skillet or sauce pan, heat olive oil and 2 TBSP butter over medium heat.  Throw in the onion and garlic and saute gently until translucent.

Add the arborio rice and work it into the butter mixture so that every single piece is coated in the fat.  You should start to hear a slight crackle.  This is how you know the lobster is ready for the wine.

Add the wine and wait until the liquid is completely absorbed.  Turn the heat down just slightly and start to add your lobster stock, 1 ladle at a time.  DO NOT ADD MORE LIQUID UNTIL THE LIQUID YOU ADDED PREVIOUSLY IS COMPLETELY ABSORBED.  This is essential for good risotto.

(If you make risotto in less than 20 minutes, you ain't doin' it right.)

Check the risotto after the third or fourth ladle for doneness.  You want a slight give to the risotto, but you don't want it mushy or crunchy.

When the risotto is where you want it, turn the heat down to low and stir in the herbs, butter and tomatoes.  Gently fold in.  Turn the heat off and add the 1/2 cup of parmiggiano.  Whip it with a spoon until it is nice and creamy.  Check for salt, add if necessary.

Gently fold in the lobster meat, reserving a few pieces to top it off for presentation.  Or you can just go ahead and dump it all in.

Top with more herbs, parmiggiano and freshly ground black pepper.

Remember, get your asses in the kitchen!

Enjoy!

Krissi Biasiello is a native of South Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  Cooking since she was a little girl with her large Italian family, she decided to leave her paralegal job and shoot for the stars on FOX’s cooking competition show, MasterChef.  She beat out 43,000 homecooks across America and came in 4th place.  Under the scrutiny of Gordon Ramsay, Graham Elliot and Joe Bastianich, Krissi has made her mark in the culinary world.  She now shares her recipes with all of you!  Her rustic, homestyle take on everything will win you over and will definitely “get your asses in the kitchen”. 
To contact Krissi for appearances, in-home demonstrations, catering and more, you can find her below. 

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