For this creamy Croatian risotto, Top Chef winner and Spiaggia executive chef Joe Flamm was inspired by a dish from Gverovic-Orsan, a seafood restaurant on the Adriatic Sea. Squid ink provides dark color and a gentle brininess in this Croatian risotto. Rather than lots of butter and cheese, this risotto relies entirely on stirring to make it creamy, so stay close by as it cooks. You can substitute the langoustines with 8 large shrimp or 4 halved Maine lobster tails if needed.
- Bring stock and 5 parsley stems to a simmer in a medium saucepan over medium; reduce heat to low, and keep warm. Chop parsley leaves to equal 5 tablespoons; reserve remaining leaves for another use. Place chopped parsley leaves in a small bowl, and set aside.
- Heat 3 tablespoons oil in a large saucepan over medium. Add onion and 1 tablespoon garlic; cook, stirring often until onion is softened, about 3 minutes. Stir in rice, and cook, stirring often, until grains are almost translucent and have a nutty aroma, about 3 minutes. Increase heat to medium-high. Add wine, and cook, stirring constantly, until wine is absorbed 2 to 3 minutes.
- Remove and discard parsley stems from warm stock. Add 1/4 cup stock to the rice mixture, and cook, stirring often, until almost absorbed. Continue adding 2 to 3 cups stock, 1/4 cup at a time, stirring often, until stock is almost absorbed after each addition and rice is just beginning to soften about 15 minutes total. Remove from heat, and set aside.
- Heat remaining 3 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add langoustines and clams; cook, turning occasionally until langoustines are pink and just cooked, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove and set aside. Continue cooking clams until they open, about 10 minutes, stirring in squid and remaining 1 teaspoon garlic during the last minute of cooking time. Remove from heat; discard any unopened clams. Return langoustines to skillet.
- Return rice mixture to heat over medium. Stir in cuttlefish ink, lemon zest, and salt. Continue adding stock, 1/4 cup at a time, stirring often, until stock is almost absorbed after each addition, rice is al dente, and mixture is creamy, 5 to 7 minutes longer. (You may not need all remaining stock.) Remove from heat. Stir in butter, lemon juice, and 3 tablespoons reserved chopped parsley. Season to taste with salt. Divide risotto among 4 bowls, and top evenly with langoustines, clams, squid, and the remaining 2 tablespoons chopped parsley. Serve immediately with lemon wedges.
Suggested Pairing: Complex Friulian (or Croatian) white.
Source: Food and Wine