Growing up in a coastal town in the Florida panhandle, I developed a deep love for fresh seafood. Shrimp is a favorite. I even made a conscious decision when I became a vegetarian, that if I ever got to move back to my beloved hometown, shrimp was back on the menu.
After ten years of practicing vegetarianism, I moved back home. A year later, I started eating seafood again and haven’t looked back. I eat fish or shellfish two nights a week. Otherwise, I eat vegetarian only. I’m a pescatarian. It’s a word so esoteric that it even confuses my spell-checking software.
Haha! Check it out! I’ll definitely need to add that to my dictionary. I’m not sure why that’s funny, except that I’ve always considered myself a girl “beyond definition.”
As a vegetarian, I fell in love with risotto. I loved the cream-based cheesy, sticky goodness. The fragrance of toasted arborio beckoned to me like few other dishes. However, I did not enjoy making them. Traditional risotto requires stirring and timing and just the right techniques. Good Italian restaurants in the north and Orlando frequently offered risotto on the menu and were willing to make it vegetarian if I called ahead. However, since moving back home, I’ve been missing my favorite dish.
How is my Oven Baked Shrimp Risotto different?
I am a creature of comfort and a lazy one at that. Alas, I didn’t relish standing over a hot stove, spooning broth one ladle at a time for almost an hour in the Florida summer. However, my lack of gumption wasn’t going to satisfy my craving. So, I searched the internet for a baked risotto, modified, and experimented till I came with my own southern coastal baked dish of comfort that somewhat resembles a risotto. Unlike most traditional risottos, though, my Oven Baked Shrimp Risotto with Basil and Pecans isn’t high-calorie. I do not use butter or a lot of cheese.
Also, traditional risotto usually uses pine nuts. I substitute toasted pecans because I’m a good southern girl.
Technically, it’s not an authentic risotto. But it’s still delicious and much less laborious. Not to mention, you have dinner on the table for two in 30 minutes. Take that risotto!
You will need an oven proof pan with a lid. I love my Woll saute pan. It’s over safe up to 480 degrees. But any good, non-stick, oven proof pan will work.
We enjoy hosting parties and my husband and I are both avid gamers. You can find me on PS4 as SunshineFlaGirl. We also play tabletop RPGs and eurogames.