June 10, 2011

Asparagus Risotto

I made some risotto the other night as I was craving some. There is a bounty of asparagus at the markets and even some at the grocery stores is Ontario grown. Asparagus is so much better when it’s fresh, especially in the spring. It’s one of those signs that spring is here. I made enough and packed it full of veggies so it could either be a meal or a side dish.

The original recipe is Spring Risotto with Asparagus and Peas from Fieldof Greens and adapted it. I don’t like my peas cooked – straight out of the pod please – so I doubled the asparagus (yumm) and added extra carrots. On a cool rainy day it was perfect.

Asparagus Risotto
6 cups veggie stock with some tomato paste mixed in (keep warm)
Ground pepper
3 cups asparagus, cut into pieces
1 tbs olive oil
2 tbs butter
½ medium onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 ½ cups Arborio rice
2 medium sized carrots, diced
A pinch of saffron threads, soaked in 1 tbs hot water
½ cup white wine
1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
2 tbs chopped parsley
Cook the asparagus in boiling water for 1- 1½ mins then drain and set aside. In a large skillet heat the oil and butter and add the onion, salt and some pepper. Sauté over medium heat for 3-4 minutes until it softens. Add garlic and sauté another minute. Add the rice and carrots and sauté for 2-3 minutes, stirring constantly. If you want to use saffron, add it. Begin adding the stock a cup at a time, allowing the rice to absorb it before adding more. Keep stirring. When you have added 3 cups of the stock add the wine. Continue adding the stock and stirring. As you add the last of the stock add the asparagus and a few pinches of pepper. The risotto is ready when it is still a little saucy. Stir in the parmesan and sprinkle with parsley.


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