Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Seafood Beer Risotto with Stone Cali-Belgique IPA

Remember when I blogged about a certain cupcake? The fine folks at Stone Brewing Co. took notice, which led to a care package of 8 bottles of Stone brews and a collaboration (!!)

Over the next few weeks/months I'm going to share sweet and savory recipes that feature Stone Brewing Co. beers. Sooo excited:)

I was super excited to try the Stone Cali-Belgique India Pale Ale. Stone describes it as a California-style IPA with an undeniable Belgian influence. Sign me up because I'm a fan of both hoppy-bitter-citrusy IPAs and yeasty-clove-y-banana-y Beligian wheat beers!

I thought the Cali-Belgique IPA would be the perfect addition to seafood risotto as the original recipe calls for dry white wine, like a Chardonnay. A typical IPA can be a little "Type A," but the Belgian yeast in Cali-Belgique IPA balanced the hops' intensity. It's an accountant's dream: balanced. In other words, I loved it.

As for the risotto, who doesn't love a warm and creamy carb-fest? In addition to craft beer, we have a mild obsession with garlic. Any garlic called for in a recipe is at least doubled. So if you don't mind having vampires around, you can use the low end of the garlic spectrum.

By the way, I've picked up a few tricks on making super creamy risotto:
  1. Add the stock slowly to the pot of arborio rice. I'm talking a quarter cup at a time. Stir constantly, particulary after each addition of stock. And don't add any more until the previous quarter cup of stock has been completely absorbed.
  2. Keep your stock heated. That way, the temperature of the arborio rice will remain stable in the pot. Cold stock leads to hard, undercooked rice (via NPR). 
I made the seafood beer risotto for dinner with John and the Livelys. Appetizers included crusty bread with olive oil and balsamic vinegar for dipping and homemade guacamole. Once again, the Cali-Belgique paired well with both.

As dinner progressed, we cracked open a bottle of the Stone Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale: a slightly hoppy, chocolately and malty, dark ale. And we finished with our homebrewed 3 Floyds Zombie Dust. It's a pale ale brewed with Citra hops that impart a grapefruit aroma and flavor.

Let's just say it was a night filled with great friends, foods, and beers!

Seafood Risotto
Adapted from Eat Live Run

1 cup arborio rice (risotto rice)
1 tbsp olive oil
1 shallot, minced
2 to 4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup Stone Brewing Co. Cali-Belgique IPA
4 cups chicken stock (heated)
1 - 6.5oz can lump crab meat
3/4 lb peeled and deveined shrimp, tails removed (I seasoned with salt, pepper, and garlic powder)
1 small bunch asparagus, trimmed and cut on a diagonal into 1.5" pieces
1 lemon
1/4 cup fresh Italian parsley, minced
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4-1/2 tsp sea salt

Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the shallot and garlic and saute for about three minutes, until soft. Add the rice and toss to coat each kernel with oil.

Add the beer to the pot and stir. Cook until all the beer has been absorbed---about three minutes.

Add the stock---a quarter cup at a time---stirring after each addition and not adding any more until the previous addition has been completely absorbed. It will take about 45 minutes to complete this step, but don't skip it!

Blanch the asparagus in boiling water for two minutes then drain and run over with cold water. Set aside.

After all the stock has been absorbed into the risotto, turn off the heat. Heat a teaspoon more oil in a non-stick skillet over medium high heat and add the shrimp. Quickly cook until the shrimp are pink and curled.

Add the shrimp and can of lump crab meat to the risotto, along with minced parsley, grated cheese and sliced asaparagus. Season with salt to taste. Serve each bowl of risotto with a big squeeze of lemon over top.

Note: The risotto doesn't have an overwhelming "beer" flavor. The IPA (or wine) simply add another layer of flavor that water or stock lacks. Plus, the alcohol cooks off.

In general, you should cook with beer or wine that you would also drink on its own.

PS - I was given this beer by Stone Brewing Co. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
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1 comment:

  1. that looks so good! today i made risotto but it did NOT look like that.


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