Risotto with dungeness crab

As I promised in the original risotto post the possibilities are endless.  Dungeness crab risotto is fresh,  luxurious and indulgent dish.  I have to say that I was introduced to Dungeness crab by our dear friend Wendy who has been hosting us for crab night for years.  I learned from her that the California Dungeness crab season is during  the “r” months: November to April.

serves: 4        difficulty: easy      prep time: 30 min


  • 1 lbs cooked Dungeness crab meat
  • 1/2 yellow onion, minced very finely.  Apparently the French Launch standards is – the onion pieces have to be as small as a grain of rice!
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tbs butter
  • 1 1/3 cups of Arborio rice (1/3 cup rice per person is portioned for a middle course. Increase to 1/2 cup per person if this is a main course).
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 6 cups vegetable or chicken stock
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream


Risotto is great to serve at a dinner party but it needs to be finished right before it is served, and it takes about 20 min to cook. So unless you are OK missing half the conversation at your dinner party, it is tough to prepare after your guests have arrived. This recipe includes a trick that I learned from a Jamie Oliver cookbook that allows to prepare the risotto ahead of time and just finish it in 5 min when ready to serve.

Chop the onion.  Peel the onion and slice in half lengthwise. Finely mince half an onion (and user the rest for something else).  Apparently the standard at French Laundry for mincing onion for risotto is for each shred of onion to be as small or smaller than a grain of rice.

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Heat up the stock to boiling.

Heat a medium saucepan, and add the olive oil.  Place the minced onions in the pan, and sweat them on medium heat until you can’t smell the raw onion flavor anymore.

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Add the rice and stir.  Sauté the rice and the onions for two minutes on medium heat being careful to not brown the onions.  Add the white wine and cook until almost all of it has evaporated and the mixture is dry.  Once the wine is cooked out and you do not smell the alcohol any further add the first ladle of stock.


Continue cooking the risotto on medium heat lightly stirring with a wooden spoon until the liquid has almost evaporated.   Repeat with a total of 7 ladles of stock. Once all the stock is incorporated, turn off the heat, and stir the risotto to let it cool off.  When you taste it, it should be still quite al dente.  Season with 1 tsp of salt and some black pepper. Taste it and adjust the seasoning as needed. Stir it every 2 min two more times. Now the risotto is almost ready, and it will take 5 min to finish before serving.

When ready to finish,  whip the cream to medium peaks.  Reheat the risotto and the remaining stock.  Add 2 more ladles of heated stock to the risotto and stir.  Add the cooked crab meat and stir until it is warmed through.  Fold the whipped cream, and remove from the heat!

Voila! Ready to serve!

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