Date Night Recipes Weeknight Dinners

Lemon Basil Risotto with Crispy Seared Scallops

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Happy Valentine’s Day! Kevin and I usually stay home and make dinner together. I’m just not a fan of prefix menu’s and the outrageous prices that come along with them. We usually go the surf ‘n turf route and have steak and scallops are our favorite. We like to experiment with different seasonings and flavors, it’s fun! I mentioned in a previous blog post that last year we actually had a cook off and let everyone on IG be the judges. I don’t think it has to be a real holiday at all but it’s fun to celebrate love (or anything for that matter!). I have an event background so I love parties and anything I can do with a theme.

Lemon Basil Risotto with Scallops

I chose to do a risotto this year because 1. Risotto is scary to many people and 2. Risotto is SO EASY to make. I know you’ll be able to do this just as good as me! I infused mine with lemon zest and basil, which gives it an insane freshness. Risotto can be a pretty heavy dish so I like that it lightens it up a little bit.

Lemon Basil Risotto with Seared Scallops

Scallops are one of my all time favorite things that comes from the sea. I don’t eat a lot of [cooked] fish, I say that because sushi is my #1 but I don’t like cooked fish (weird I know). Anyway – Scallops are just so buttery and delicious. They’re super quick to make because you just sear them in a hot pan on each side, throw on a little salt and they’re good to go. You can drizzle some sort of sauce on top, but once it’s mixed with the risotto it’s an insane combo that you’re date will never forget 😉 There’s also a little bit of wine in the risotto because what even is an Italian meal if there isn’t any wine involved?

Lemon Basil Risotto with Seared Scallops

I’ve also found that it’s super important to have a good quality olive oil. There are some companies that have additives in theirs so make sure you’re label reading! I went with Flora Foods because they’re an Italian brand that I know and trust. They’re also based out of Florida so I automatically love them, ya know?

This is totally a meal you can make while sipping wine and having a convo in the kitchen. The risotto needs a lot of love, so you kind of can’t leave the kitchen. If you’re making this for yourself, which I’ve done many-a-time, I throw on some Frank Sinatra and pretend I’m in a movie while I sip on red wine.

Anyway, whatever you’re choosing to do this Valentine’s day, HAVE FUN and eat some delicious food. Don’t worry about the calories or the fat, ENJOY YOURSELF.

Thank you to Flora Foods for sponsoring this post, in turn, making it possible to share another delicious recipe with you!

Creamy Lemon Basil Risotto with Crispy Seared Scallops

Easy risotto for a weeknight meal. Lemon & basil marry the scallops into the dish perfectly.
Course Dinner
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Author Jordan Elbaum

Ingredients

  • 1 cup Arborio Rice
  • 4 cups Chicken or Vegetable Stock
  • 1 Shallot diced
  • 1 Lemon zested
  • 5 Basil Leaves roughly chopped
  • 1 lb Large Scallops
  • 2 tbsp Flora Foods Olive Oil extra virgin
  • 1/2 cup White WIne
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan Cheese fresh grated
  • 1 tbs Butter

Instructions

Risotto

  • In a medium sauce pan on medium heat, add Flora Foods Olive Oil. Once it’s hot add in diced shallots and 1 tsp salt and saute until translucent.
  • Add rice and ‘toast’, stirring occasionally for another minute or two.
  • Add 1 cup of chicken stock and stir continuously until it’s been mostly absorbed by the rice. Repeat until all of your stock is gone and your rice is al dente.
  • Add in wine, lemon zest and basil and stir until wine has been absorbed. Add parmesan cheese and 1 tbs of butter. Stir to combine. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Scallops

  • Remove scallops from packaging and place on paper towels. You want these to be as dry as they can be!
  • Heat a pan to medium high and add 1 tbs Flora Foods Olive Oil
  • Sprinkle scallops with sea salt and place in the hot pan for around 2 minutes on each side or until golden brown.
  • Once scallops are finished, divide up the risotto into bowls, placing scallops on top. Enjoy!

Have you tried this Shredded Beef Ragu yet?!