This smoked salmon and lemon risotto is full of light, fresh flavours and is at the same time quite decadent tasting, thanks to hot smoked salmon plus the addition of a little crème fraîche toward the end of the cooking, which transforms an ordinary risotto into something extraordinary.
I have a tendency to crave all things salmon. Which is what led me to this latest creation! Like a big wholehearted hug in a bowl, this smoked salmon and lemon risotto is the perfect combination of warm, comforting and healthy. I love the rich, velvety tanginess of crème fraîche in this smoked salmon and lemon risotto. Together with peppery arugula, it’s a wonderful mix of fresh flavors and delicate textures that come together perfectly. Plus making this delicious meal couldn’t be easier! Easy enough for a weeknight meal!
Smoked Salmon and Lemon Risotto — Flavors of the Pacific Northwest
Growing up in the Pacific Northwest, I am biased when it comes to things that involve salmon. We do love our fish, especially our salmon and take it very, very seriously. When you ask me “what is typical West Coast cuisine?”, well I would undoubtedly say that it’s known for its seafood and healthy, fresh, local foods. Think simplicity, clear flavors with the possibility of infusing some Asian influence into it. And when it comes to fish, salmon is the ingredient that most readily comes to mind. Salmon is rarely just ‘salmon’. We have wild alderwood smoked salmon, jerky, pepperoni, pate, candied salmon…you name it! Salmon jerky and “Indian candy” (extremely, addictively tasty) are two of the things I always bring back in my carry-on after a visit home.
Buying sustainable salmon
When buying smoked salmon, the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) has a fabulous website that lists where you can buy sustainably sourced products in the country where you live. Or just look for the ecolabel in stores. By choosing MSC labelled seafood, you reward fisheries that are committed to sustainable fishing practices and contribute to the health of the world’s oceans. An important choice to make!
A light, creamy and tasty risotto with smoked salmon, lemon, crème fraîche and parsley, topped with fresh arugula leaves. Easy enough to make for a delicious weeknight dinner.
- 2 shallots, finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 1/2 cups Arborio risotto rice (300 g)
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 cup dry white wine (250 ml)
- 3 1/2 cups vegetable broth (hot) (875 ml)
- juice of 1 large organic lemon
- 200 g pack smoked salmon, coarsely chopped
- 3 tablespoons crème fraîche
- 1 tablespoon butter (unsalted)
- 3 tablespoons flat-leaf parsley, chopped
- 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
- freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- Baby arugula leaves, as garnish
Bring broth to simmer in saucepan over medium heat. Reduce heat to low; cover to keep warm.
In a deep skillet or saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat and sauté the shallots until soft but not browned, about 5-6 minutes. Increase the heat to medium-high; add the rice and garlic, cook for two minutes, stirring continuously.
Add the white wine. Bring to a gentle boil, then reduce the heat and simmer until slightly reduced, about 2-3 minutes.
Add enough warm broth to cover rice; simmer until almost all broth is absorbed, stirring occasionally, about 6 minutes. Add the juice of half the lemon, more broth, 1/2 cup at a time, and cook, stirring a bit more frequently, until it has been absorbed and the rice is creamy -- this shouldn’t take more than 25 minutes for al dente risotto.
Stir in the chopped salmon, crème fraîche, butter, parsley, lemon zest and the remaining lemon juice. Season generously with freshly ground black pepper but don't add salt as smoked salmon is salty enough.
Turn off the heat, cover and let stand for 2-3 minutes to allow flavors to meld.
Serve topped with arugula leaves and enjoy!
If you make this Smoked Salmon and Lemon Risotto recipe, I’d love to hear how it turned out for you! Be sure to rate it and leave a comment below to let me know! Especially if you have tips for other readers. Or take a picture and tag me on Instagram @ellerepublic and don’t foget to hashtag #ellerepublic so I don’t miss it!