Serve this fragrant creamy risotto in small portions as it is quite filling.
The scallops add a touch of decadence without blowing the budget.
This also makes a delicious supper on its own – just add a few handfuls of baby spinach leaves at the last minute for a complete meal in a bowl.
- 60g butter
- 1 tbsp fresh thyme leaves, chopped, plus extra for garnish
- 1 tbsp lemon zest
- 1 onion, finely diced
- 1 clove garlic, finely diced
- 2 rashers bacon, finely diced
- ¾ cup risotto rice (Arborio rice)
- 750ml hot fish stock
- ½ cup fresh cream
- ¼ cup parmesan cheese
- 16-20 scallops (or prawns)
1 Mash together the butter, thyme and lemon zest. Heat half the flavoured butter in a large saucepan or heavy frying pan, and gently saute the onion, garlic and bacon for about 4-5 minutes until just coloured.
2 Add the rice and cook for 2-3 minutes to coat the grains in the butter and toast them slightly.
3 Gradually add the hot stock 1 cup at a time, cooking gently and stirring, until the moisture is absorbed – this should take about 10-12 minutes and the grains should be al dente.
4 Gently stir in the cream and parmesan and season to taste.
5 Meanwhile, heat the remaining flavoured butter and saute the scallops for about 2-3 minutes until they are puffed and translucent.
6 Serve the fluffy risotto in warmed shallow bowls and top with lemon and thyme scallops. Drizzle over all the delicious cooking juices.
About Jo Wilcox
"I have had a love of food my whole life. Lucky for me my mum allowed me to play in the kitchen from the very beginning – from sitting up on the bench watch her peeling peaches for preserving or planning dinner parties from her many Womans Weekly Cookbooks. Starting in my local beach café, I went onto professional cookery training and my big foodie OE working as a professional chef and nanny. At 21 I launched my first restaurant. The following years saw me owning a gourmet cake and dessert shop and then a pasta deli before I discovered the world of food styling. Today I work in food styling making food look beautiful and tasty in packaging and advertising shoots, as well as my most important role yet – Food Editor of New Zealand Woman’s Weekly. I aim to provide great meal solutions that are interesting and approachable, and of course gorgeous foodie photos that make you want to cook them! I love the feedback and the knowledge that people actually cook them and have great results. If I can give someone a love of cooking and enjoying family meal times and gatherings then my job is done!" See www.jowilcox.co.nzmore of this author