Zucchini Black Rice Risotto

13 May

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Black rice adds a wonderful sweet taste to this dish and the blend of lemon and chili gives a fresh, complex flavor. I added shrimp here, because I had extra. The shrimp is delicious, but you could just as easily add tofu or any other protein, or keep it plain and serve it as a side dish.

1 cup black rice (you can also use white or brown)
1 onion
5 cups broth or water
4 medium zucchini
Juice of 2 lemons
8 oz frozen shrimp
1/2 c. cilantro or basil
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
Cayenne Pepper
Olive oil

Bring 2 c. of water to boil. Add the rice and keep at a medium boil for 10-15 minutes uncovered. Grate the zucchini.

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Meanwhile, saute 2 tbsp oil in a large pot over medium heat. When hot add onion and stir frequently until translucent, for about 5 minutes. Drain the rice and add to the skillet, along with salt and pepper, stirring until it is coated with oil, for about 5 minutes.

Keeping the heat at medium-high, add the stock or water, 1/2 c. at a time, stirring frequently. Whenever the moisture is just about evaporated, but not yet dry, add more moisture.

Meanwhile de-thaw the shrimp and remove the tails.

After about 15 minutes, add the grated zucchini.

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Stir frequently, the zucchini will release liquid and then it will eventually become dry. Taste the rice at this point, you want it to be tender but still a bit crunchy. If the rice doesn’t taste done, add more liquid until it is ready. When it is ready, stir in the shrimp (if you are using it). Once the shrimp is pink, stir in the lemon juice and seasonings and then serve immediately. Garnish with cilantro.

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