During the month before we moved from the log house to the city, we cobbled together a lot of from-the-pantry meals as we worked to downsize and pack. With time and energy in short supply, almost every day I pulled out my electric pressure cooker, which made quick work of many batches of soup and every imaginable kind of risotto (so much rice in the cupboard!). And, as the cupboard grew more and more bare, some of these on-the-fly meals weren't quite as successful as others. This lemon, artichoke and shrimp risotto -- inspired by a forgotten can of artichoke hearts -- was one of the winners. Frozen artichoke hearts will work just as well, and you can omit the shrimp and substitute a rich vegetable broth to make a vegetarian version.
Lemon, artichoke and shrimp risotto (stovetop and pressure cooker methods)
From the pantry, you'll need: chicken broth, onion, arborio rice, lemon, frozen shrimp, unsalted butter, Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.
Serves 4 as a main course, 6-8 as appetizer. Leftovers will keep for two days in the refrigerator.
Ingredients (note changes in the recipe for pressure cooker method)
4 cups chicken broth (homemade stock or low-sodium store-bought)
2-3 Tbsp olive oil
1/3 cup finely minced onion
1 cup arborio rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 14-oz can artichoke hearts (not marinated), quartered
Zest of 1 lemon
1/2 lb large shrimp (31-40 size), defrosted if frozen, peeled and deveined
1 Tbsp unsalted butter
1/3 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated
Fresh ground black pepper, to taste
Bring broth to a boil in a large pot and set aside at a simmer on the stove.
Heat oil in a large, deep skillet. Add onion, and sauté until soft but not brown, 2-3 minutes. Stir in the rice, making sure to coat each grain, and let toast for just a minute.
Remove pan from heat, and stir in the wine. It will bubble up, so keep your distance! Return the pan to the heat. When the liquid is absorbed, begin adding broth, 1 ladleful at a time, letting each bit of liquid be absorbed. Continue adding broth, reserving 1/2 cup at the end.
Add the artichoke hearts, lemon zest and shrimp, and stir for 2 minutes.
Add butter and cheese, and stir vigorously for 2 minutes. Add in remaining broth and stir to desired creaminess. Season to taste with black pepper, and serve immediately.
Pressure cooker directions
Note: I use a 6-quart electric pressure cooker; if you use something else, you might have to adjust the timing.
Warm 3-1/4 cups of broth in the microwave, and set aside.
Set the pressure cooker to Browning, and heat oil 2 teaspoons of olive oil. Add 1/2 cup minced onion, and sauté until soft but not brown, 2-3 minutes.
Stir in 1-1/2 cups of rice, making sure to coat each grain, and let toast for just a minute. Pour in 1/4 cup white wine, and stir occasionally until the liquid is mostly absorbed (this will happen very quickly). Then, add the broth.
Turn off the cooker, and lock the lid in place. Cook at High Pressure for 6 minutes, then quick release the pressure. It helps to set your own timer when the pot comes to full pressure, so you'll know when the cook time ends.
Stir in the artichoke hearts, lemon zest and shrimp, being sure to stir enough to let the heat of the rice cook the shrimp (1-2 minutes).
There will be some liquid remaining in the risotto, so set the cooker to Browning, add butter and 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, and stir vigorously for 30-60 seconds, until most of the liquid is absorbed and the rice is as creamy as you like it. (Remember that the rice will continue to thicken after the heat is off, so stop cooking just before you think it's creamy enough.)
Season to taste with black pepper, and serve immediately.
More risotto variations:
Risotto with shrimp and asparagus, from The Perfect Pantry
Green herb and kale risotto, from The Perfect Pantry
Three mushroom risotto, from The Perfect Pantry
Tomato-basil and spinach risotto, from Iowa Girl Eats
Bacon and radicchio risotto, from David Lebovitz
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