Making seafood risotto at home doesn’t have to be scary or intimidating. By following these basic steps you will make a risotto di mare that will rival even the best of ristorante in Italy! I have eaten risotto di mare countless times in Italy and believe this recipe recreates the same flavor profile.
The secret to this recipe is in the homemade stock. It uses a lot of wine, shrimp shells and the clam juice. The combination can be salty so avoid adding any additional salt until the end of cooking.
I use fresh wild shrimp and Manila clams but any seafood will work great here. You can add mussels, squid, langoustines, lobster etc.
Risotto di Mare
Seafood risotto with fresh shrimp and clams in a homemade spicy seafood and wine stock.
Clean the clams
Brush the outside of the clams with a hard bristle in a bowl of cold water. Discard any that do not close.
Cook the clams
Heat a saucepan on medium. Add a tablespoon of olive then add the clams. Add 1 cup of wine then quickly cover and steam for 3-6 minutes. The clams are done when they open. Avoid over cooking as they can get rubbery.
Strain and separate the clams
Strain the clams and reserve the cooking liquid. Remove the meat from half of the clams and leave the other half whole. Set aside.
Clean the shrimp
To clean the shrimp start by removing the legs, then peel the shell off. The tail can be tricky, but being gently and removing as much as the shell first will help in removing it in once piece. Once the shell is removed cut a shallow line in the back of the shrimp to remove the waste vein. Cut the shrimp into small portions and place in fridge until ready to cook.
Make the stock
Add freshly cleaned shrimp shells to a dry saucepan over medium heat. Press down on the shrimp shells with a spoon or pestle to release some of the oil. Add the pepper and the tomatoes cut in half and cook for another minute before 1.5 cups of wine. Cook for 5 minutes then add the reserved clam liquid. Simmer on low for 20 minutes.
Cook the shrimp
Heat a saucepan over medium and add 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add finely diced shallots and cook for 30 seconds. Add the shrimp and mix to avoid the shallots from burning. Cooking for 2 minutes or until the shrimp is cooked.
Place with the mixture with the reserved clams.
Cook the rice
Add a tablespoon of olive oil to a saucepan on medium. Add the rice and mix. Stir for a minute then add 1/2 cup of wine. Constantly stir and add one ladle of stock at a time, waiting to add the next ladle until the previous one has been absorbed. Continue for roughly 20 minutes. It should be al dente with a spot of white still in the middle of the rice.
Add the seafood
Once rice is done turn off the heat, add seafood and a tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil. Cover and set aside for 5 minutes. During this 5 minutes to not lift the lid.