This is a beautiful dish, impressively rich in delicate flavours and easy to prepare, giving you a superb dinner in just 30 minutes max. A great idea for one-dish dinner parties. Serve with well-chilled Prosecco Rustico di Nino Franco, and, for afters, a nice fresh salad of tomatoes, fresh olives, caperberries, mozzarella di bufala Campana or Monte Enebro goat cheese and lashings of cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil… Really, there is absolutely no need for anything else!
When prawns are caught, immediately and on vessel, they are either stacked in boxes with ice for the preservation of their colour and freshness or, in less happy circumstances, they are sprayed with ammonia. Avoid the latter, or, if you absolutely must buy, make sure you wash them very very thoroughly before you start cooking. What you have to look for, when buying prawns, or any other fish for that matter, is a fresh smell of the sea, and nothing else. If it doesn’t smell of the sea, don’t buy it! We buy all our fish from Rita’s Fish Shop, most conveniently located across the road from our store on Rue d’Argens. Ask for the local variety of prawns. They are so much tastier.
2 or 3 Acciughe al Tartufo d’Alba [anchovies in truffle]
18 fresh, local prawns
2 level cups of Gli Aironi Carnaroli rice [approx 250g]
Tenuta San Pietro a Pettine Truffle Oil
White wine – even though you’ll be cooking with this, never buy the cheapest of the lot. It is the quality of the ingredients you use that will make, or break, the taste of your finished food!
Salt and pepper
Wash the prawns. Break off the head and set aside. Devein the prawns and peel. Set aside. With a hand-held blender, blend 4 or 6 garlic cloves with olive oil. In a large pan, toss in the prawn heads with the garlic oil, taking care not to burn the garlic. Add a dash of white wine to deglaze the pan. Press the prawn heads down to extract the juices, then remove from pan and discard. You are now left with a very tasty ‘bisque’ in which you will be cooking your risotto.
In the same pan, gently sweat down the anchovies until they dissolve, adding olive oil as necessary. Add Gli Aironi carnaroli rice. Heat through. Add a glass of white wine and let it evaporate. Stir constantly throughout the cooking process of the risotto. Add warm water, a ladle at a time, letting each dose boil away before you add the next. When the risotto is nearly cooked, add the prawns, and season all very well with nice, thick salt and freshly crushed pepper. Cook through, until you end up with a creamy, fluid consistency. Plate and top with a drizzle of the truffle oil. The one from Tenuta San Pietro a Pettine is nice and pungent, so you only need a gentle drizzle. You do not want the truffle taste to overpower the lovely taste of the prawns. Serve immediately.