Lobster and Mushroom Risotto

Risotto is one of my favorite things to make, but my children stubbornly refuse to like it, no matter what ingredients it includes. So last night, I made risotto with lobster, mushrooms, peas, and white wine, and bypassed the kids’ groans by also making scrambled eggs. Everyone was happy, and it was hardly a challenge on the Sun Bucket.

The Sun Bucket started at 592°F (311 C).

Arborio rice cooked slowly with lots of liquid is what makes risotto so creamy. To get things started, I heated a tablespoon of olive oil and threw in one finely chopped shallot. Once the shallot was softened, 3/4 C. of Arborio rice went into the pot. The rice was stirred quickly so that it didn’t toast too far. Tonight’s photographic challenge: getting the camera to focus, automatically or manually, through all the steam. (I’ve mentioned that a Sun Bucket is hot before, right?)

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Before the rice got too toasty, I added 1/2 C. chicken stock, and stirred continuously. Once that was fully absorbed, I added more liquid, either more stock or chardonnay. After a cup or two of liquid, I threw in some sliced mushrooms.

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After another few rounds of stirring in liquid, the rice was getting tender. When it seemed like the rice was almost done, I added about 1/2 C. of frozen peas and stirred them in. Then two lobster tails, roughly chopped, and a handful of chopped flat-leaf parsley went in next. The Sun Bucket was still so hot that it only took a minute or two for the lobster to turn opaque and cooked through.

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The risotto, topped with some freshly grated parmesan, took 34 minutes to prepare. I put a lid on the pot to keep it warm.

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The Sun Bucket was covered up for 31 minutes, until it was time to make scrambled eggs for the kiddos. Three eggs, a splash of milk, and salt and pepper, went into a small pan coated with cooking spray.

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Overcooked scrambled eggs, the kind where the brown skin forms on the bottom, gross me out. Using a rubber scraper, I keep the eggs moving in the pan until they’re cooked through. This took 9 minutes tonight.

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A side salad with risotto, or eggs for the under-10 crowd, and everyone was happy. The Sun Bucket was used for 43 minutes tonight (not including the half hour break in the middle) and cooked 0.9 kg of food. The risotto and eggs had a combined approximate caloric value of 1400 calories.

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