Pesto Shrimp with Vegetable Risotto

I love making risotto.I know it seems a little daunting but it really is quite simple. The perfect risotto does require attention while being prepared because of the slow and constant stirring but this entire dinner can be ready in roughly 45 minutes. The technique of slowly adding liquid as it absorbs into the rice results in a texture that is creamy and tender but has a slight bite . I use spinach and asparagus in this recipe but feel free to use whatever vegetables you like. Peas, kale and broccoli all work well. This risotto pairs perfectly with Pesto Shrimp which will be baking in the oven while you are stirring the risotto. Timing is everything when cooking so first you will need to turn on the oven to 375.Have all your ingredients prepped and ready. Place shrimp in a baking dish and toss with pesto. Put shrimp back in refrigerator. Then roast the asparagus. While the asparagus are cooking you should sauté the garlic in oil for the shrimp. The garlic oil can be set aside after it is done so it is ready to to pour over shrimp. This is also the time to warm up the broth for the risotto. When the asparagus are ready start to make the risotto. When you begin adding the broth you can stop stirring for a minute and take the shrimp out of the refrigerator. Pour garlic oil over the shrimp, add the butter, cover with foil and place in oven. Continue to make risotto and keep an eye on the clock so you take the shrimp out at the right time. Both dishes will be ready within minutes of each other. The result will be a delicious dinner that will look beautiful when served. I know you can do this! Let me know how it turns out and if you have any questions.

Vegetable Risotto:

  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup Arborio rice
  • 4 cups of warm low sodium chicken or vegetable broth
  • 8 medium sized asparagus- ends trimmed
  • 2 cups of coarsely chopped baby spinach
  • 2 tablespoons freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Toss asparagus with olive oil and roast in 375 oven for 10 minutes until fork tender and bright green. Do not over cook. Remove from oven and cut asparagus into 1 inch pieces.

Melt butter in a heavy bottom pan and sauce onions until translucent. Add rice and sauté for 2 minutes. Start adding the stock a half cup at a time and continue stirring. Add more stock as liquid absorbs into rice. When you add the last amount of stock add the asparagus and spinach. When rice is tender and creamy add parmesan cheese. Total cooking time should be around 20-25 minutes. If too dry add a little more stock or some warm water.

Pesto Shrimp

  • 1/4 cup Olive Oil
  • 1 pound medium shrimp
  • 6 garlic cloves peeled and sliced
  • 2 tablespoons pesto
  • 2 tablespoons butter

Preheat oven to 375. Heat olive oil in a pan, sauté garlic until light brown. Place shrimp in baking dish toss with pesto. Pour oil and garlic over shrimp. Crumble butter on top. Cover and bake for 10-15 minutes until sauce is bubbling hot and shrimp are cooked.

2 thoughts on “Pesto Shrimp with Vegetable Risotto

  1. Can’t wait to try this one out in my new kitchen! Thanks for the great recipes!!

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