Mar 30 2010

Spring Veggies, Finally

Published by at 4:22 pm under Dinner

Daylight Savings Time is possibly my favorite time of year; I was actually smiling on the drive home from work yesterday, and I know it’s because it’s still light outside these days before I reach my apartment. Also a mood lifter: new produce from the change in season! The butternut squash are starting to taper off at my neighborhood market, and the strawberries no longer cost an arm and a leg. I don’t even mind that my allergies are driving me nuts. 

In honor of spring, I decided to make a light risotto using some seasonal vegetables and shrimp. The veggies worked well together, but my assistant suggested that next time we add a little something sweet in the mix for more flavor diversity. When I make it again, I may throw some lightly grilled mango slices in, too. 

Shrimp Risotto with Grilled Asparagus and Arugula

Ingredients (serves 2, if one is VERY hungry, as my assistant was):

4 cups chicken broth

1/2 cup dry white wine

1 shallot, chopped finely

1 clove garlic, minced

1.5 cups medium-grain rice

6 stalks asparagus (more or less works, depending on your tastes)

2 tsp. melted butter

3 tsp. Cavender’s greek seasoning

1 tsp. cayenne pepper (less if you don’t care for spicy foods)

A pinch each of salt and pepper

3/4 pound shrimp, peeled and de-veined

3 cups packed arugula

Grated Pecorino cheese, for garnish

Bring broth to boil in medium-sized pot, and add wine. In another large pot, sauté garlic and shallot in a bit of oil for about 2 minutes, or until tender. Add rice to garlic and shallot. Add 1/4 cup of the broth mixture to the rice pot, and stir to incorporate. When broth is fully absorbed into rice, add another 1/4 cup broth to the rice mixture (don’t rush it!) Continue this way until all of the broth has been incorporated into the rice. 

(Note: I used my trusty grill pan for the asparagus and shrimp because I was in the spring-time spirit, but you could cook them however you like.) Coat grill pan generously in cooking spray and heat pan. Lightly coat asparagus in about 1/2 tsp. of olive oil. Add asparagus to grill pan, and lightly sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook for about 5 to 7 minutes or until they start to brown, then flip them onto the other side and cook for another 4 to 5 minutes. Set asparagus aside on a plate and chop into about one-inch long sections. 

In a small bowl, toss shrimp in butter, Cavender’s seasoning, cayenne, salt and pepper until the shrimp are well-coated. Coat grill pan with cooking spray again, and add shrimp to pan. Cook for about 5 minutes on each side, or until the shrimp are pink and opaque. 

Toss asparagus, shrimp and arugula into pot with rice, and cook for another couple of minutes until texture is soft and creamy. Serve topped with grated Pecorino cheese. 

2 responses so far

2 Responses to “Spring Veggies, Finally”

  1. Billyon 01 Apr 2010 at 11:11 am

    It sounds great! The grill pan idea gives another dimension to the flavors. By the way, Keifer’s is scheduled to be on a Cat Cora on the Food Network. The Mayflower will also be featured in another episode.

  2. Livon 03 Apr 2010 at 9:54 am

    That’s amazing! Keifer’s and the Mayflower are definitely deserving. I’ll have to tune in…