16 April 2012

Prawnsotto - King Prawn Risotto - is a little bit special.

So there we were, one evening before Easter, pondering on what to have meal-wise over the Easter period.  Did we really want to go down the big roast dinner route, or should we take things a bit more leisurely?  Did we even want to cook at all, or should we have a giant High Tea?  

Every suggestion had its own merits but we at least decided that, as we weren't entertaining any family, we'd not go for the big roast dinner.  We would approach Easter Sunday's mealtime with every intention of making it relatively easy, stress free - but tasty.

Well, that was the brief.  Now all we had to do was think of something to fit!

The first thing to consider was the weather.  We were in the middle of a warm spell, so something involving salad was an idea - right up until hubby mentioned one of his risottos.

Now I always perk my ears up at the suggestion of a Risotto .  One of my favourite meals, pre-risotto making days, was "Rice'n'stuff" - which was a risotto-type meal of some meat or another mixed with a number of vegetables, made in one pan with rice.  So not a risotto - but very nearly!

What sort of risotto could he make, that would acknowledge the "specialness" of Easter Sunday, but not be so totally over the top as to be diabolically expensive?  We thought back to our favourite risottos.  The Asparagus & Prosciutto, Bacon & Brussels Sprout, Bramley Apple Bacon & Black Pudding and Roasted Butternut Squash with Goat's Cheese were all fabulous, but then we remembered a King Prawn Risotto that hubby had made.  It didn't find its way onto the blog because we forgot to take photographs of it.

We'd found our Easter Sunday dinner.

With the addition of a red pepper that had been looking for a job to do for some time, plus helping hands from various herbs that we are growing in the garden, the idea of a gorgeously unctuous, tasty risotto with huge prawns just bursting with succulence?  Well, it had to be done.

So, the next time you're looking for a celebration dinner but don't want to spend hours tending to a big roast - remember the humble King Prawn and its beautiful risotto.  You won't regret it.

PRAWNSOTTO - King Prawn Risotto    (Serves 3-4)

Ingredients :

300g Arborio rice
400g cooked & peeled King Prawns, rinsed and well drained onto kitchen paper
30g butter
3 tbsp Olive Oil
2 banana shallots (or 4 normal ones) very finely diced
1 red pepper very finely diced
30g Parmesan finely grated
1 clove of garlic
1.5 litres fish stock, kept hot
200g petit pois (defrosted)
half tsp dried basil
half tsp dried oregano
half tsp dried dill
pinch smoked paprika.

Method :

1.  In a large saucepan, melt the butter into the olive oil before adding the shallots, red pepper and garlic.  Sweat these together gently, until the shallots are soft, taking care not to colour them.

2.  Once this stage has been reached, turn the heat up and get the mixture to a good sizzle before adding the rice.  Stir the rice quickly, making sure to get each grain well coated in oil and butter and getting the whole mixture as hot as you dare (careful not to burn the pan) before slooshing in a good ladleful of hot stock.

3.  You should be able to hear each grain of rice heave a collective sigh of relief.  Now add the basil, oregano, dill and paprika (note, if using fresh herbs then use 1 tsp of each).   In the time honoured way of the risotto, keep the rice moving and add another ladleful of stock whenever the mixture starts to get too dry.

4.  Take six of the prawns and chop them finely using a sharp knife.  Once the risotto has had four or so ladlefuls of stock, add the minced prawns to the mix and then continue the stirring and adding of stock when needed.

5.  After about twenty minutes or so, the risotto will be nearly ready.  The rice should be almost cooked through but still al dente and the sauce should be smooth, velvety and 'oozy'.  At this stage, the peas and the prawns can be added and mixed in thoroughly to heat through. 

6.  Finally, add the parmesan, take the pan off the heat and leave to relax for a couple of minutes.

Serve onto hot plates, garnished according to your own taste, with a light salad.



  1. This looks so good!

    I found your blog on LinkedIn today. I looked at few pictures and clicked follow. I am gluten-intolerant but I don't limit myself to gluten-free recipes because almost everything can be made gluten-free. I am very new to blogging and learning as I go but it's been a lot of fun.

    1. Hello Eleanor - thanks for following on through to the blog here! Having spent a few months investigating whether I was gluten intolerant (I'm not), I agree with you that it is possible to make a lot of "ordinary" recipes gluten-free. This risotto was absolutely divine - I can thoroughly recommend it, as is the case with all my recipes. I've cooked them all and wouldn't have posted them, if I didn't recommend them. :) Hopefully, that way means that you can trust all my recipes!

  2. Hi there, this is a really nice post about fish/seafood. It would be great if you linked to it in my Food on Friday series. This week it is about all things fishy and seafoody. Food on Friday

    1. Well, how could I refuse when you ask so nicely! lol I'll sort that out in just a moment - thank you. :)

    2. You are such a star for putting up the link. Thank you very much. We now have a nice collection of all things fishy!

  3. Hi, Jenny. Just to let you know that this dish was featured today on my Need Some Inspiration series. Have a good week.

    1. Oooooo, thanks Carole! :) Hubby cooked a Bacon, Pear & Aubergine risotto last night that was every bit as special as this one. Watch out for it appearing on the blog very soon! :)


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