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The First Risotto of the Season: Shrimp, Garbanzo Bean & Cherry Tomato Risotto

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This was one of those, “hmmmm, I wonder what I could throw into a risotto?” kind of meals. Really, once you have arborio rice, broth, wine and Parmesan cheese, anything else goes. So, I had a bag of interesting green garbanzo beans from Trader Joe’s in the freezer. I also had about a half pound of medium (say 36/40 count or somewhere around there — not too important, though) shrimp. Add some cherry tomatoes and it’s the first risotto of the 2006/2007 season!

Shrimp, Garbanzo Bean & Cherry Tomato Risotto
1/2 pound medium shrimp (size doesn’t really matter so much here, as you are going to slice the shrimp into bite-sized pieces — just don’t use small bay shrimp)
2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1 1/2 cups arborio rice
3/4 cup halved cherry tomatoes
1 cup frozen green garbanzo beans, (you could easily substitute edamame, canned garbanzo beans or frozen peas)
1 small onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup dry white wine
4 cups chicken broth (if your chicken broth is super chickeny, use a combination of chicken broth and water for the liquid)
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
Juice of 1/2 a lemon
salt & pepper

Start with the shrimp. Rinse and devein as needed. Remove the tails, then slice in half length-wise. Cut those pieces in half if you are using super large shrimp. You want nice, bite-sized pieces. Salt and pepper the shrimp. Meanwhile, set a soup pot on the stove top and heat up the water and broth. Keep it at a simmer.

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Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large heavy-bottomed pot. Saute the shrimp for about 1-2 minutes, until pink. Remove from the pan and cover with foil. In the same pan, add the rest of the olive oil, the onion and the garlic. Let cook 2-3 minutes until they start to soften. Add the rice and dried oregano. Stir to coat in the oil and let toast about a minute.

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Now add the wine and stir while it is absorbed. Here’s the fun part — add the water/broth about a 1/2 cup at a time until it is absorbed by the rice. When you have about a cup left, add the garbanzo beans and tomatoes. The nice part about doing this when it’s cold out is that it keeps you warm.

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On your last addition of liquid, add the shrimp. Stir until a bit more of the liquid is absorbed and the texture is nice and creamy. Add the cheese and combine. Squeeze in the lemon juice and salt & pepper to taste. Serve with more Parmesan as a garnish.

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Next week: Some special baking, a retro thing, and a pot roast!

3 comments to The First Risotto of the Season: Shrimp, Garbanzo Bean & Cherry Tomato Risotto

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