Tomato and Bacon Risotto with Gulf Shrimp

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 1 hr 10 min
  • Active: 1 hr 10 min
  • Yield: 6 servings
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Ingredients

6 cups chicken stock

6 cups plus 2 tablespoons water 

8 slices thick-cut bacon, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch pieces 

1 onion, diced  

2 cups arborio rice 

1 cup dry white wine 

2 teaspoons kosher salt 

2 cups 1/2-inch-diced ripe tomatoes 

1 pound fresh or frozen gulf shrimp, peeled, deveined and cut into 1-inch pieces 

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces 

1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil, plus whole leaves for garnish 

Directions

  1. Combine the chicken stock and 6 cups water in a medium saucepan and keep warm over low heat on the back burner.
  2. Heat a wide-bottomed pan over medium-high heat. Add the bacon and the remaining 2 tablespoons water to the pan. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the water evaporates and the bacon begins to sizzle. When the bacon is well browned and crisp, 8 to 10 minutes, remove from the pan with a slotted spoon and set aside on a paper towel-lined plate to drain.  
  3. Add the onions to the drippings in the pan and saute until tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in the rice and cook 1 minute more. Deglaze the pan with the wine and stir well. Simmer, stirring often, until the all the wine has been absorbed by the rice, about 3 minutes.  
  4. Make the first addition of chicken stock: Ladle enough of the heated stock into the pan to cover the rice completely and season with some salt. Stir it into the rice. Adjust the heat if needed so that the pan remains at a light simmer. Cook, stirring constantly, until the level of chicken stock falls below the surface of the rice. Add more stock so that the rice is once again just covered and season with some salt. Repeat this process until the rice is creamy and tender, 25 to 30 minutes; it should take approximately 4 additions of stock to fully cook the rice.  
  5. When the rice is done add the tomatoes and cook until heated through and they start to break down, 2 to 3 minutes. Once the mixture comes to a bubble, add the shrimp. Stir well to incorporate and continue cooking until the rice is thickened and the shrimp are cooked through, about 3 minutes.  
  6. Remove the pan from the heat and add the butter. Stir vigorously until incorporated, and then add most of the bacon and basil, reserving some for garnish. Stir until incorporated, then spoon immediately into bowls, garnish and serve.