Fennel Risotto with Crispy Sesame Shrimp

Hello hello!!! It got a little chili today and we even saw some snowflakes.. But.. that was it!
I know that for people who live here in Canada for many years, snowing is just so common and normal thing to happen but for me who it's my first year in Toronto it's so exciting!
I love snow! Back in Greece in Athens the weather is warm almost all year round, and maybe you'll see snow for one or two days in a year.. Of course not every year..
Lets go to the recipe now, simple, easy risotto with such an aroma and crispy sesame shrimps! Delicious!

Ingredients (4 people) 

For the risotto 
6 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1 whole star anise
1 teaspoon ground coriander
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 small onion diced
1 fennel bulb, halved, cored and diced
1 cup Greek Carolina or Arborio or Carnaroli Rice
1 cup dry white wine
1-2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup grated Parmesan and more for serving
Salt and Pepper

For the shrimp 
20 medium shrimp, peeled and deveined ( keep the tails on)
1/3 cup sesame seeds
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon honey
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
A little grated cheese for sprinkling
A little flour
Salt - Pepper


Place a skillet over medium heat and when the pan is hot add the sesame seeds and toast them for 1-2 minutes. Remove skillet from heat and set aside.
We start putting the risotto broth to warm up. In a saucepan, add 2 tablespoons olive oil 1 tablespoon butter. We have a pan over medium-high heat.
In a medium pot combine the chicken or vegetable stock with star anise and coriander over medium - low heat and keep warm.
Preheta the oven to 400 degrees.
Coat a deep pan with the olive oil and pace over medium heat. When the oil is hot, add the onion and fennel. Cook, stirring until the vegetables are soft.
Add the rice and stir for 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, stir in the wine and simmer to evaporate the alcohol.
Pour in 1 cup of the warm broth. Stir until the rice has absorbed all of the liquid. Keep stirring while adding the broth cup by cup allowing the rice to absorb the liquid before adding more.
Cook for 18 minutes or untill the rice is tender but firm to the bite. Remove from heat and add the butter and parmesan. Stir.
Meanwhile use a bowl and whisk the olive oil, honey and vinegar. Put the flour in a shallow plate and season with salt and pepper. Dredge the shrimp into flour then in the oil-honey-vinegar and then into sesame seeds.
Use a baking pan covered with parchment paper and lay the shrimps on it. Sprinkle some grated parmesan on top.
Bake the shrimp for 10 minutes.
Serve the risotto with the crispy shrimps on top.



  1. I love fennel but have never had fennel risotto - I bet it is delicious!!! And with the shrimp on top?! An incredible meal.

  2. It must be quite a transition going from Greece to Canada! But I think you picked the perfect meal for a cold Canadian day! This looks simply heavenly and as always, unique and interesting flavor combinations!

  3. oh what a fantastic idea! fennel risotto!

  4. I have lived in Canada all my life, and you're right, I'm used to the snow -- but I love it just the same. I hope you're liking Toronto, and your risotto looks amazing!

  5. I LOOOOVE fennel bulb. I discovered this ingredient this year and I've been crazy about it. You made risotto with fennel bulb that's amazing! I hope to try this one day and so as sesame shrimp. What a great combination of meal! :-)

  6. I am yet to cook risotto and is on my to do list. This one sounds delicious because it has so many of favorite ingredients like fennel, star anise and parmesan cheese. I love star anise, I add it to my regular basmati rice while cooking. It has such a lovely aroma.

  7. Can I put all of the 20 shrimp in my serving of risotto? I love it. Nom nom nom


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