Saturday, 18 June 2011

Asparagus and Pea Risotto

I had never made risotto before tonight. No way, I hear you cry. Yes, way. This had to be remedied. So, last night I took it back to basics and expanded my repertoire with this fresh, garden risotto. It was so easy. And delicious.

Now, everyone says the key to a good risotto is love. It's true. You have to love it. Give it lots of attention. Not too much heat. Keep stirring as you add the stock and you will achieve a creamy dream.

For 2/3 people:

1 cup arborio rice
4 cups (1 litre) vegetable or chicken stock (I used chicken)
1/2 cup white wine
Large bundle asparagus
1 cup frozen peas
Small onion (or shallot if you have one) chopped
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
3 tbsp olive oil
Knob of butter
Dollop of creme fraiche (optional, but yummy)
Handful of parsley, roughly chopped

Put peas in a bowl of warm water to defrost. Put stock in a pot and heat gently, or Roughly chop asparagus and saute gently in 1 tbsp olive oil for 3 minutes, until just tender. Remove from pan.

In the same pan, gently saute the chopped onion on a medium low heat until translucent and soft - don't let them brown. Add the rice and stir so that every grain is covered in oil. Stir on a medium low heat for about 2 mins. The rice may pale a little. Add wine and stir until fully absorbed by the rice. Now, this is where the love comes in. Begin adding the stock half a cup at a time, stirring as it absorbs into the rice. This takes time depending on the rice you use, but generally about 20 minutes. It will start getting creamy the more love you give it.

Here's my pan, mid love:

When all the stock has been added and the rice is tender, stir in asparagus, peas, parmesan, butter, creme fraiche. Check to see if salt is needed, but depending on the stock you use it may not need any. Serve topped with chopped parsley and lots of ground black pepper.

Not wishing to toot my own trumpet but I'm pretty chuffed. My first attempt at a risotto and it came out great. I love writing this blog. It's a wonderful excuse to try things I've never tried, teach myself new stuff.

Great news: there was enough for leftovers which I heated up for lunch today.


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