You’ve shopped around and got some bargains. Here are some further moneysaving ideas.
Buy shell-on prawns at lowest price you can find. Peel with clean hands. Use prawns however you want. Put all the prawn detritus into a food bag, close tightly, chuck in freezer.
Buy fish pie mix, cheapest you can find, either a value range or offer. Freeze if not frozen already.
Pour leftover white wine from bottle into ice cube bags. Do NOT be tempted to use wine from used glasses. Freeze wine. (You can do same with red wine too).
When you find arborio rice on offer, buy some.
When you have two or three bags of prawn shells, stick in saucepan with water. Don’t completely drown prawn shells but if just covering prawn shells, that’s not enough. Add a few peppercorns and a bay leaf or a bouquet garni. Do NOT add salt. Bring to the boil, then simmer to reduce the liquid and make it more concentrated. Your guide should be the colour ie stock not water.
Chuck in a couple of white wine ice cubes at most, after letting them melt a little in a mug/cup. Use a teaspoon and taste to make sure the diluted wine doesn’t taste sour (it shouldn’t). If by any chance it does, use fresh in the risotto itself.
Drain the stock through a fine sieve into a fresh pan. Chuck the prawn shells, peppercorns, bouquet garni into vegetable waste bin for composting.
Reheat the stock and keep at gentle simmer. Follow a fish risotto recipe, ie a proper one where you add stock, one ladle at a time, to the arborio rice, stirring carefully until absorbed before adding next. Use your fish pie mix instead of the cubed fish.
Fish risotto done cheaply.
All photos copyright 2017 Théroigne S B G Russell