Creamy asparagus risotto, cooked with fresh herbs, Parmigiano-Reggiano and a touch of lemon. Perfect Spring meatless main dish or wonderful topped with grilled shrimp or scallops.
If you’re looking for unique asparagus recipes aside from grilling or roasting, give this a try! Asparagus is the perfect addition to risotto in this light dish. A few other risotto favorites are Butternut Squash Risotto, Creamy Mushroom Risotto and Seared Scallops over wilted Spinach and Parmesan Risotto.
It’s March which means Spring is in the air. Asparagus season begins and this Italian rice dish is a great way to enjoy it. Because this risotto recipe is so simple, I like to use the freshest ingredients. The easiest way to do that is cook with seasonal vegetables, fresh herbs and good quality cheese.
Risotto can be a labor of love, it’s not the kind of dish you turn on and walk away from, but instead slowly cooked with ladle-fuls of broth, adding more each time it’s absorbed. Just before the last ladle, you add the fresh asparagus to the last five minutes of cooking time and finish it with a touch of lemon juice and lemon zest.
Asparagus Health Benefits
This spear-shaped veggie is an awesome weapon for your health. It’s packed with disease-fighting nutrients including fiber, folate, vitamins A, C, E and K and glutathione, a detoxifying compound that may protect against certain types of cancer. It’s also loaded with age-defying antioxidants that work to neutralize cell-damaging free radicals in your body. Look for spears with tight buds and firm stalks without wrinkles.
How To Make Asparagus Risotto
More asparagus recipes you will love:
- Chicken and Asparagus Lemon Stir Fry
- Grilled Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus
- Cream of Asparagus Soup
- Roasted Asparagus
- Asparagus and Caramelized Onion Tartlets
Spring Asparagus Risotto
- 4 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 1/3 cup shallots, chopped
- 1 cup arborio rice
- 2 oz dry white wine
- 3/4 lb thin asparagus spears, tough ends trimmed, cut 2-inches long
- 1-2 tsp fresh lemon juice
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, plus more for serving
- salt and fresh cracked pepper, to taste
- 1 tsp grated lemon zest for garnish
- In a large saucepan, heat broth over medium-high heat.
- When it boils, reduce heat to a simmer and maintain over low heat, taste for salt and adjust as needed.
- In a large heavy saucepan over medium heat, heat the oil and add the shallots; sauté 3-4 minutes.
- Add the rice; mix well so the rice is coated throughout and saute until the rice is slightly translucent, about 2-3 minutes.
- Add the wine and stir until it is absorbed.
- Add a ladleful of the simmering stock; stir and wait until it is absorbed before adding another ladleful stirring gently and almost constantly.
- Continue this process until the rice is creamy, tender to the bite, but slightly firm in the center.
- Add the asparagus along with the last ladle of broth and continue cooking 5 minutes, total time should be about 25-30 minutes from the time you started.
- When all the liquid is absorbed, remove from heat and stir in the lemon juice, parsley and Parmigiano-Reggiano.
- Serve immediately and top with fresh cracked pepper, lemon zest, and extra grated cheese if desired.