Lobster Chorizo & Saffron Risotto with Tarragon ❦ Risotto de Lagosta com Chouriço Estragão & Açafrão

This super delicious, easy enough for a weekday, the risotto will wow your socks off. I use cooked lobster and make a quick, but flavour-packed stock in under 30 minutes! In fact, you can have this yummy dish on the table in under 1 hour. Still don't have time? Valentines Day is coming up and this recipe will certainly impress your significant other. FYI...you do NOT, yes you read that right, have to stir the risotto the entire time.

I use Carnaroli rice for all my risottos. It really is the caviar of risotto rice. The grains cook up beautifully and hold their shape. Here's a little secret, this risotto was virtually no-stir! Yup...no slaving over the pot, laboriously stirring. All the stock is added at once and I only came back to it a few times over 15-18 minutes, start to finish.

Lobster Chorizo & Saffron Risotto with Tarragon ❦ Risotto de Lagosta com Chouriço Estragão & Açafrão

Serves 4

Total time 1 hour


For the quick lobster stock:

2 Whole cooked lobsters, remove the meat and reserve for rice. Shells will be used to make the stock.

Olive oil, as needed to coat the bottom of the pot, about 60-80 ml.

1 1/2 Litres Hot water or fish stock

50 ml. Brandy

1 tsp. Fennel seeds, lightly crushed

1 tsp. Whole black peppercorns

1 tsp. Ground Tumeric

1 tsp. Ground ginger

1 Large white/ brown onion, peeled and roughly chopped

1 Large leek, roughly chopped

1 Rib/stalk of celery, roughly chopped

4 Cloves of garlic, peeled and left whole. Crush them with the back of the knife to release their oils easier.

2 Whole bay leaves

6-8 Sprigs Fresh flat-leaf parsley

1 tbsp. Tomato paste concentrate

1 Large pinch of Saffron threads, approx. 20 threads.

Salt and pepper to taste


For the risotto:

1 litre of reserved lobster stock

Reserved lobster, cut into bite-size chunks. 150 g. of Chorizo, casing removed and diced

2 Shallots, I like the echalion/ banana variety

1 Juice of Large lemon

125 ml. Noilly Prat French Vermouth, Portuguese Vinho Verde or your favourite dry white wine

300 g. Carnaroli variety rice, you can also use Portuguese Carolino or Spanish Bomba variety rice.

1 Bunch fresh tarragon, leaves only finely chopped to finish

Salt and pepper to taste

Crushed red chilli flakes to taste


For the brandy brown butter:

200 ml. Reserved lobster stock

60 g. Unsalted butter

50 ml. Brandy


For The Lobster Stock:

  1. Heat a large,heavy-bottomed stockpot, over medium-high heat. Add olive oil, lobster shells. Cook stirring often for about 3-4 minutes.

  2. Add onion, leek, fennel, peppercorns, bay leaves, garlic, celery, and tomato paste. Saute until tomato paste cooks a bit, about 1 minute. Stir to prevent burning. Deglaze pan with brandy.

  3. Set brandy alight carefully with a long match. Let flames die down and proceed. If you are not comfortable/ confident doing this, omit this step.

  4. Add water and parsley stalks, ground turmeric, ginger and saffron threads. Do not salt the water/stock.

  5. Lower heat and simmer gently for 25-30 minutes. Do not cover the pot.

  6. Once the stock is finished, strain through a fine-mesh sieve. Using a spoon or potato masher push down on the solids to extract as much juice as possible. A lot of the lobster's essence is in the head.

  7. Discard solids and reserve stock. Taste and season with salt and pepper.

  8. It should yield about 1200 ml. or so, you may have more or less depending on the rate of evaporation. From that, measure out 200 ml. and reserve for the brown butter glaze that will top the risotto. You will need 1 litre of lobster stock. If any stock is leftover you can freeze it beautifully.


Making The Risotto:

1. In a shallow casserole pan heat the olive oil and 1 tbsp. of butter on medium-high heat. Add chorizo, bay leaf and shallot. Fry until shallot is translucent and chorizo is fragrant for about 3 minutes.


2. Add rice and stir to coat the grains. Let cook for 1 minute, stirring every few seconds.


3. Add garlic and wine. Pan will sizzle. Let the wine evaporate completely. Stir.


4. Add hot lobster stock, and stir.


5. Cover the pot and let the rice cook on a low simmer for 18 mins. I gave it a stir every 6 minutes or so. Three times in total.

6. When there are about 10 minutes left for rice to be done, Stir in cooked reserved lobster and start the brandy brown butter.


For the Brandy Brown Butter to finish and top the risotto:

In a small saucepan, add butter on low-medium heat. Let butter melt evenly, stirring. Let cook until it foams and starts to turn golden. It will smell nutty. Be careful not to let it burn.

Add brandy and lobster stock, continue to cook until reduced and thickened, It should coat the back of a spoon.



7. Once the risotto is finished, add the chopped tarragon and stir through. Divide risotto amongst deep bowls and drizzle with brandy brown butter.Top with more tarragon if desired.