For a mid week splurge, risotto is one of my favorite go-to. It’s perfect on a chilly night and has all the qualities you get from comfort food. I found this recipe for coconut milk risotto with shrimp and kale pesto on Lauren Conrad’s website and it’s simply delightful for a quick and healthy meal.

Coconut Milk Risotto with Shrimp and Kale Pesto

Ingredients (for the risotto):

Serves 2-4 (depending on if it’s a main course or starter)

  • 2 Tablespoons coconut oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • ¼ cup green onions, finely sliced
  • 1 ½ lb. medium/small shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • ¾ cup dry white wine
  • ¼ cup finely chopped onion
  • 1 pound (16 ounces) arborio brown rice
  • 7 cups unsalted or low sodium seafood broth or stock (chicken or vegetable is fine too)
  • 1 cup canned coconut milk
  • kale pesto, for garnish (recipe below)

Instructions:

  1. Pour broth or stock into a pan and bring just to a simmer.
  2. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add half the coconut oil and heat for 30-60 seconds until shimmering. Add the garlic and green onion, then shrimp. Sauté until shrimp begin to turn pink, about 2 minutes. Add a 1/2 cup wine. Simmer until shrimp are just cooked through, about 2 minutes. Drain shrimp and set aside on a plate, reserving cooking liquid.
  3. Add the remaining coconut oil, then the onion and cook, stirring frequently, until it starts to soften, about 5 minutes. Next add the rice. Cook, stirring constantly for about a minute then add the remaining wine. Stir and cook while the wine absorbs into the rice. Pour about 1 cup of broth into the pan. Cook, stirring constantly and letting the liquid be completely absorbed. The heat should be on medium to medium-low. Not too hot that it burns on the bottom. You want to cook it slowly so the starch from the rice is released and it turns creamy.
  4. Add another cup of hot stock and keep cooking and stirring. Repeat until rice is creamy and cooked through. Pour in the coconut milk, stirring so the rice absorbs it. The rice should not be mushy or crunchy, but al dente (to the tooth).
  5. Remove from heat and stir in the shrimp. Season well with salt and black pepper. Serve hot. Garnish with pesto.

Ingredients (for the kale pesto):

  • ½ bunch kale, ribs removed
  • ¼ cup cilantro
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 2 ounces parmiggiano
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • salt and pepper

Instructions:

Combine everything in a food processor and pulse until finely chopped and combined.