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InstaPot Shrimp Risotto!

What do you get when you mix rice with cheese and butter?  Risotto!  There is nothing quite like risotto that is well made.  The buttery goodness of cheese and rice mixed with a few spices makes this one of my top foods on my comfort list.  The problem is that risotto takes time and patience; one misstep and you can have either risotto that either is a runny mess or comes out to the consistency of sticky rice.

Traditionally, to make risotto involves taking rice and pouring in chicken stock a little at a time, constantly stirring it until it is nice and creamy.  If you are imagining someone standing over a pot and constantly stirring and occasionally pouring in more stock, then you pretty much have a picture of what it takes to make perfect risotto.  When risotto is done right, it is almost like mac and cheese but lighter.  But once again, the work it takes to get there….

Luckily for me (and you), there is a simpler way if you own an instapot.  The result of this pressure cooker dish is pretty much dead on AND it involves much less work.  No one will be the wiser and everyone will love it (it’s kid approved too!).

Instapot Risotto with Shrimp

Print Recipe
Serves: 4 Cooking Time: 15 minutes

Ingredients

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 2 minced garlic cloves
  • 1 1/2 cups of Arborio or other short grained rice
  • 2 tablespoons white wine (like Kim Crawford Sauvignon Blanc)
  • 4 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 pound deviened and peeled shrimp
  • 3/4 cup grated parmigiano cheese

Instructions

1

In your instapot, melt 2 tablespoons of butter over "saute".

2

Add onion and garlic and saute until soft, about 3-4 minutes.

3

Add rice and cook, stirring 1 minute.

4

Add wine and cook until evaporated, 30 seconds.

5

Add 3 cups of broth and season with salt and pepper

6

Close the lid on the instapot, turn the saute function off and then touch the "rice" button.

7

When the instapot beeps, release the valve pressure and remove the lid.

8

Reset the instapot to saute and add the remaining chicken broth, shrimp and cheese,

9

Cook the shrimp until opaque, occasionally stirring (about 3 to 5 minutes).

Notes

While risotto is considered "elegant" and can be pricey depending on the ingredients, the cost of this dish is relatively cheap, if you know where to source the ingredients. Without the shrimp, the cost is about $6.00. Everything was bought at Costco with the exception of the onion, garlic and rice. A pound of deveined and peeled shrimp ($10.00) Parmesan (1 pound) ($9.00 or about $2.00 per dish) Onion ($.50) Butter ($1.50) Arborio rice ($2.00)

 

Dinner

Spiced Chicken Stew with Carrots

Looking for an easy, heavy on the flavor, low on the pocket book meal?  Look no further than this spiced chicken “stew” with carrots.  In this dish, I use bone-in chicken thighs, a few simple ingredients and a couple pounds of carrots at a cost of roughly $1.50/serving.  And since, I’m using the slow cooker, it is literally prep and wait…

This slow cooker Moroccan flavored recipe was a crowd pleaser at my house.  More importantly, it was approved by my 9 year old, who is funny about any food that doesn’t come fried or whose name doesn’t end with the word ‘tender’.

The sweetness of the carrots and raisins are perfect compliments to the meatiness of the thighs. The almonds elevate it ever so slightly; the nuttiness is good but the crunch factor is needed to balance out the dish.   The recipe called for a slow cooker with a browning option, which I had no idea even existed so I browned the chicken thighs in a cast iron skillet before they went into the cooker.  

I was actually quite shocked about the serving sizes with this one.  Although it claimed to serve 4, we actually were able to pull six servings from it, albeit a smaller portion for me the next day.

I paired this cous-cous in a lemon, olive and oil vinaigrette, which wasn’t as much of a hit (my wife said next time, maybe we should opt for rice).

Inspired by Martha Stewart Living’s book “One Pot”.

Spiced Chicken Stew with Carrots

Print Recipe
Serves: 4 Cooking Time: 4-6 hours

Ingredients

  • 8 bone-in chicken thighs
  • 2 tblspoons olive oil
  • 2 pounds carrots, chopped into 1 inch lengths
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 cup raisins (golden)
  • 1/2 cup cilantro
  • 1/4 cup sliced roasted almonds

Instructions

1

Season the chicken thighs with salt and pepper.

2

Heat olive oil in a skillet and add the thighs when hot, skin side down, about 2-4 minutes until golden brown.

3

Transfer thighs to a plate.

4

Cut the carrots and add them to the slow cooker along with garlic, cinnamon stick and cumin.

5

Place chicken on top and cover.

6

Cook on low for 8 hours or high for 4 hours or until chicken is cooked through.

7

Add the raisins about 15 minutes before the dish is done.

8

Remove the chicken and carrots (using a slotted spoon). Finish the plate off with fresh cilantro and almonds and top the chicken with the braising liquid in the slow cooker.

Notes

I added cous-cous as a side but this recipe is delicious without it. For the carb-conscious, adding cous-cous would add roughly 41 carbs per serving. Pairing with a wine? Think Pinot Noir!