Coriander is probably my favourite herb and I find it makes its way into lots of my cooking. One dish it hadn’t yet made it into was a risotto and, after fancying a different kind of risotto this week, I decided to have a little experiment with a Mexican style creation. The result was delicious. The risotto itself is creamy and indulgent yet bursting with fresh and vibrant flavours and the Cajun prawns add that little bit of extra oomph to the dish.
Whenever I use king prawns I always buy them raw and frozen and they are cheapest this way. Just make sure they are thoroughly defrosted before you start cooking. This is actually a fairly straightforward risotto to make as you essentially make a ‘base’ risotto and then add all your other bits and pieces to it near the end.
If you aren’t a fan of prawns, there are many other meats that would also be lovely with this dish…chicken, pork, the world’s your oyster!
Cajun Prawn and Coriander Risotto
Serves 4 = 10sp on Blue, 10sp on Purple, 11sp on Green
1/2 tbsp oil
1 onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
240g Arborio rice
125ml glass of white wine
1 x chicken stock cube (made up with 750ml boiling water)
1 tbsp Cajun spice
100g spinach, roughly shredded
Small bunch coriander
100g light cream cheese
2 tbsp fresh grated parmesan
1 tsp light butter
Pinch of crushed chillies (optional if you like it spicy)
For the prawns
400g raw king prawns
1 tsp Cajun spice
4 tsp lightest soured cream
Take a large non stick pan spray with 1 kal and fry the onion in the oil until soft and golden (6-7 minutes). Then add the garlic and fry for a few minutes more. Add the Arborio rice and toast for a minute then add the wine, simmering until reduced by half.
Next add the Cajun spice with 250ml of the chicken stock, stir and begin to simmer, letting the rice absorb the stock. Keep adding the stock as it absorbs until you have used it all (this will take around 25 minutes).
Whilst the risotto is simmering you can make the green element of the dish. Add the spinach and coriander (stalks and all) to a food processor with a small splash of water. Begin to blend for 30 seconds and then add the cream cheese. Continue to blend until you have more of a paste consistency and then add the juice of 1 lemon. Give a final pulse to combine the lemon juice.
Add the green paste to the risotto pan, season with salt and pepper and simmer for another five minutes until the rice is cooked to your liking.
Whilst the risotto is having its final simmer, pop your prawns into a large frying pan, sprinkle with 1 tsp Cajun spice, salt and pepper, spray with 1 kal and fry for 2-3 minutes until the prawns are pink and cooked through.
Once most of the liquid in the risotto has absorbed, remove the risotto from the heat and add the parmesan and butter (and crushed chillies if you are having them). Stir through and taste, adding the juice of half a lemon to the risotto if you think it needs it (I like a nice lemony touch at the end) as well as any extra salt and pepper to season.
Serve in a bowl topped with a tsp of light soured cream and the Cajun prawns.