Wasn’t up to the weather this past week so had to take a bit of a break from my normal cooking routine. To get back into the swing of things I figured I’d keep it a little simpler and go with a risotto.
Typically in a lot of cases, the arborio rice is cooked in a type of stock, usually chicken or vegetable depending upon what is being done with the risotto. In this case however, since I was going with a scallop-based risotto I wanted to go with a flavor that didn’t detract from that of the scallops and more or less blended in more. As opposed to using as general stock I had actually taken pieces from a bacon slab (end pieces) and simmered them to obtain the juices. This along with some seasonings was the basis for the “stock”.
The scallops themselves were initially pan seared in some oil until lightly browned and then placed in the oven on the warm setting to keep them that way. The asparagus spears were seared in a skillet as well to give them a “grilled” flavor.
The arborio rice was initially places into the oil along with some onion and other spices and simmered on low heat for a minute or two. I then added a few ounces of dry white wine and raised the heat to a medium temperature for a few minutes. Every few minuted thereafter, I added a little less than a cup of water to cook the arborio until it was cooked nicely and absorbed the water with a little excess as you do not want it to dry out (whole process took between 20-25 minutes).
When there was about 3-5 minutes left in the process, I had added the scallops into the mix and mixed the risotto thoroughly. At this time I had also added a little bit of a romano/parmesan blend as well. Upon completion, I scooped it out into the bowl and added the seared asparagus spears. As the risotto is a heavier dish, for a side I just made a small mixed green salad which I used a little olive oil, fresh squeezed lemon, smoked salt, and some Hungarian sweet paprika to flavor.