Asparagus Risotto

February 6, 2009 at 11:12 pm Leave a comment

asparagus

Asparagus risotto is one of my favorite things to make for a simple but special supper at home with family and friends. We’ve been making an effort to buy more local seasonal produce, so the only reason I’m cooking with asparagus is because I’d stashed a bunch in the back of our freezer after buying too much produce at the farmer’s market last summer (amazingly it still tasted great!).

Asparagus will be back in season in a few short months – spring is the time to find it fresh and locally grown. I’ve been thinking about planting some asparagus crowns in my own garden, which apparently fare well (as long as you’re patient) in our chilly Zone 3 climate.

What’s available in the grocery store during the winter is imported from a million miles away and probably sorely lacking in taste, vitamins and eco-karma. I’ve also substituted cooked butternut or acorn squash or mushrooms for the asparagus, both of which will be easier to find and better tasting until things are growing again. Here’s the recipe:

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, finely diced
1 bunch of asparagus
1-1/2 cups arborio rice
1 cup of dry white wine
8 cups of vegetable stock, heated until hot
1/2 cup finely grated parmigiano-reggiano (or similar), plus extra for serving
salt and fresh ground pepper

Heat oil in a large (12″) saute pan. Add the onion and cook for 10 minutes over medium until soft and translucent. Add rice and stir with a wooden spoon until toasted, 3 or 4 minutes. Add the wine and stir. Then add one soup ladel of stock and cook, stirring until absorbed. Repeat and repeat and repeat again until all the stock is gone and the rice is creamy and al dente. This is about 20 minutes of standing by the stove stirring, so get your comfy slippers on!

Remove pan from heat and stir in the cheese, season with salt and pepper. Put a generous amount of cheese in a bowl with a spoon for serving at the table.

Enough for about 4 people. It’s best the day you make it, so cut the recipe in half if you’re only cooking for 2.

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Entry filed under: Cooking, Gardening, Gluten Free, Kitchen garden, Reading. Tags: , , , , , , .

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