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2017 Sancerre Rose with crab and fennel risotto

Crab Risotto with Fennel and Chilli

This recipe can be adapted for almost any type of seafood. You can prepare your seafood from scratch, or buy good quality pre-prepared.

Course Dinner
Cuisine Italian
Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Author Fiona Maclean


  • 400 g Crabmeat Allow extra time to cook and prepare the crab if you buy a live one.
  • 1 bulb Fennel
  • 1 Red chilli, chopped De-seed for less heat
  • 6 Anchovy fillets
  • 2 litres Fish Stock
  • 1 tbsp Olive oil
  • 3 Shallots or small red onions, finely chopped
  • 3 Celery stalks, finely chopped
  • 400 g Risotto rice Arborio or Carnaroli
  • 100 ml Dry Vermouth Dry white wine is also fine
  • 1 knob Butter

Marinade for the crabmeat

  • 2 tbsp Olive oil
  • 2 Juice of lemons
  • 1 handful fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 handful fresh parsley, chopped


Stage one

  1. Mix the marinade ingredients and season

  2. Add the crabmeat to the marinade

Stage two

  1. Put the stock into a pan on a low heat, keeping it just below a simmer

  2. In a seperate pan heat the olive oil. Add the chopped shallots, celery, chopped fennel and chills. Add a pinch of sea salt such as Maldon. Stir.

  3. When the vegetables have softened, add the anchovies and let them melt.

  4. Add the rice and turn up the heat. Stir continuously until the rice turns translucent. Don't let it colour.

  5. Add the Vermouth or wine. Keep stirring until it's cooked into the rice.

Stage three

  1. Add a ladle of stock and a pinch of salt. Keep the heat at a low simmer.

  2. Keep adding ladles of stock, stirring and waiting until it's absorbed before adding the next. This takes about 20 minutes.

  3. Keep checking the rice to see if it's cooked. It should be soft but with a slight bite.

  4. Now add the crabmeat. Tha aim is to warm it through, not cook it.

  5. Remove from the heat. Stir in the knob of butter and garnish with left over fennel fronds or some edible flowers.