Simple Shrimp and Veggie Risotto

Wow!  What a busy August it has been.

The kids and I took a road trip and were away for two weeks.  Then we returned to crazy Back-To-School mode.  Phew!  I’m pooped!

And while I’ve been cooking (we DO have to eat, after all!) I haven’t been blogging.  I’m just too worn out at the end of the day to actually think.

But I made something tonight that I wanted to share with you.  As usual, it was pretty easy. I did most of the prep work while the kids told me about their day and did homework. Then I cooked it while I let them watch a show.

My daughter came down with a stomach bug this morning and was on the BRAT diet all day.  So I knew she needed to have rice for dinner.  I found some Arborio Rice in my pantry and decided to run with it — I would make plain risotto for her and something a little more substantial for my guys. 

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Plus, I had a ton of veggies in my fridge that were on the fringe.  It was either use `em, or lose `em.  So I came up with this dish: 

Shrimp and Veggie Risotto

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  • 1 cup risotto
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 4 Tbsp olive oil (divided)
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 bag of frozen, raw shrimp
  • 1 heaping Tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 green zucchini squash, chopped
  • 1 yellow zucchini squash, chopped
  • 2 large tomatoes, chopped
  • 8 oz mushrooms, quartered
  • salt
  • pepper
  • shredded parmesan cheese (to sprinkle on top)
Start by getting the risotto going. In a heavy saucepan, put 2 Tbsp olive oil and melt 1 Tbsp butter with it. Saute the onion.  ImageWhen the onion is opaque, add the cup of arborio rice and saute that for 2 minutes.  Then, start adding your chicken broth — over low heat, add 1 cup at a time and allow it to come to a boil until the liquid is absorbed.  ImageYou’ll need to keep an eye on this and stir it regularly so it doesn’t burn on the bottom of the pan.
*Note:  I’ve seen recipes that instruct people heat the chicken broth in a separate sauce pan and adding it a little at a time. I’ve done this before, and found it doesn’t really make a big difference in the outcome.  So I just use the chicken broth straight from the container.  
After adding your first cup of chicken broth to the risotto — get started on the shrimp and veggies.  ImageSaute the garlic in remaining 2 Tbsp olive oil. Once the garlic is becoming more clear, add your tomatoes, salt and pepper and allow them to start to cook down (but not too much!)
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As the tomatoes are starting to soften, add your zucchini squash, mushroom and shrimp and cook it until the shrimp is pink and cooked through. (the shrimp and veggies took about 15 minutes to cook.)   
Ohhhhh — this was SO pretty and smelled SO good!!
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Once the veggies and shrimp are cooked through and the risotto is deliciously creamy — you’re ready to serve.  I put a scoop of risotto into a bowl and then a heaping scoop of shrimp and veggies on top.  Sprinkled with a little parmesan cheese and – YUM!
Personally, I thought this was delicious.  It was creamy and chock-full-of-veggies.  Plus, you can make it without the shrimp and substitute vegetable broth to make a vegetarian meal.  I was hopeful the kids would like it, too. So — moment of truth.  How’d the Hubs and the kids take to it???
  • The Hubs loved it, saying ‘It’s great.’
  • My 3 year old didn’t eat the shrimp and veggies since she was on a bland diet. But she loved her plain risotto and asked for seconds.
  • My 5 year old was in love.  He ate the entire bowl in record time.
  • My 7 year old ate it under duress (this is how he does EVERYTHING these days.  Even trying to get him ready for a trip to the pool turns me into a broken record: “Put your bathing suit on.  Put your bathing suit on.  Put your bathing suit on.”) He complained about how ‘EVERYONE’ knows he HATES zucchini and how DARE I give him zucchini!!!!  (The NERVE!!!)  I asked him to give it a try and promised he would not get dessert if he kept up his Oscar-worthy performance.  Low-and-behold… he actually didn’t hate it.  He ate it.  And if he wasn’t so set on being so difficult about EVERYTHING these days… he may have even had seconds.

I hope that getting back into the school routine gets me back on the blog routine.  I’ve missed writing these past few weeks.  The cooking…. well…. not so much!  LOL!

Happy eating!
Sharon
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