Level up the traditional risotto with elegant additions of prawn and rosemary, for a much fragrant and hearty take on the northern Italian rice dish. The light spring flavours make it the perfect recipe for any day, be it when it’s warm and you’re in need of something less overwhelming, or chilly and you’re pining for a meal that’s steamy, homemade and comforting.
- 600 g uncooked prawns (shrimp)
- 1 medium brown onion (150 g)
- 2 cloves garlic
- 2 celery stalks (300 g)
- 8 x 10 cm stalks fresh rosemary
- ½ cup (125 ml) olive oil
- 3 litres (12 cups) water
- 1 cup (250 ml) dry white wine
- 1½ cups (300 g) arborio rice
- 2 trimmed corn cobs (500 g) (see waste not)
- 50 g butter
- ½ cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
Peel and devein prawns; reserve the heads and shells. Refrigerate prawn meat in a large bowl until required. Peel and finely chop onion and garlic; reserve skins. Trim celery; finely chop, reserving the trimmings. Remove rosemary leaves from the stalks; finely chop leaves, reserve the stalks.
Heat 1 tbsp of the oil in a large saucepan over high heat. Add prawn heads and shells; cook, stirring, for 2 mins. Add reserved skins and trimmings from the onion, garlic and celery, with reserved rosemary stalks. Add the water and ½ cup (125 ml) of the wine; bring to the boil. Skim any scum from the surface. Reduce heat; simmer, covered, for 30 mins. Strain stock into a heatproof bowl; discard solids. Skim any additional scum from the surface. Keep warm.
Heat 2 tbsps of the remaining oil in a large saucepan over medium heat; cook chopped onion, garlic and celery, stirring, for 5 mins or until softened. Add rice; cook, stirring, for 1 min. Add remaining wine; cook, stirring, for 1 min. Reduce heat to low. Add stock, one ladle at a time; cook, stirring, for 25 mins or until stock is absorbed and rice is just cooked.
Meanwhile, brush corn with a little of the remaining oil; cook on a heated grill plate (or grill or barbecue) over high heat for 3 mins each side or until cooked. Remove from heat. When corn is cool enough to handle, cut kernels from cobs. Add remaining oil to prawn meat, season; toss to combine. Cook prawns on heated grill plate for 3 mins or until cooked.
Add prawns and corn kernels to risotto; cover, cook for 5 mins or until prawns are cooked through. Stir in butter and chopped rosemary; season to taste. Serve risotto topped with parsley.