I'm sure this never happens to anyone else, but occasionally, I just run out of ideas for dinner. Surprisingly, these "what on earth am I going to throw on the table tonight" evenings are usually my most creative and proudest meals.
Fortunately, I maintain a well stocked freezer. And these are the days on which the hazards of falling frozen foods upon opening the freezer door are worthwhile. The other day I stood in front on the freezer scratching my head. It was 95 degrees outside and I definitely did not want to use the oven. Ah, a bag of frozen raw shrimp I tossed into my cart a few weeks ago!
From the freezer: the raw shrimp, tail on. From the pantry: arborio rice; and from the shelf: seafood stock (vegetable stock would work as well). I had some cherry tomatoes that needed to be used and an onion that would be helpful.
Another other great thing about this is it is a one-dish meal. When you include the vegetables in the main course, no need to feel guilty about not making a salad or separate vegetable side dish. Bonus. And if you don't eat shrimp, use some frozen artichoke hearts and vegetable stock to make the risotto.
Risotto does require frequent stirring, but not constant. The entire process should take about 20-25 minutes.
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp butter
1 medium onion, chopped
1 1/2 cups arborio rice
32 ounces seafood stock
1/2 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
1 lb frozen raw shrimp, thawed, shelled and deveined
salt to taste
1. Heat the olive oil and butter in a Dutch oven, deep saute pan or large saucepan over medium or medium low heat
2. When butter is melted, add chopped onion and saute until soft and translucent, a few minutes
3. Add rice and stir until coated
4. Add a cup of the stock, stirring frequently and bringing to a low boil
5. Continue adding stock as it gets absorbed, stirring so the rice doesn't stick to the bottom of the pan
6. When the stock is almost fully absorbed, add the salt, the halved tomatoes and the shrimp
7. Continue stirring until the tomatoes are soft and the shrimp is pink, about 3-4 minutes. (Don't overcook the shrimp or they'll get tough.)
8. Serve hot with fresh grated parmesan.