Risotto with Asparagus (risotto con gli asparagi)
This simple, authentic Italian asparagus risotto recipe from Claudia Roden is a perfect early summer dish. British asparagus is at its best in May and this comforting rice dish is the perfect way to show it off.
- 1kg asparagus
- 1.25 litres Chicken or vegetable stock
- 1 onion, chopped
- 60g unsalted butter
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 350g risotto rice
- 1 bottle (750ml) dry white wine
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Grated parmesan to serve with
Trim the asparagus. Cut off about 7.5cm of tips and set them aside. Cut the stalks into pieces and boil them in stock until very tender. Lift them out and put them through a food processor with a ladle of the stock. Strain out the hard stringy bits and return the puree to the pan with the stock. In another saucepan, cook the asparagus tips in salted water for a few minutes until just tender.
In a large saucepan, fry the onion in half the butter and the oil over low heat for about 8 minutes, stirring occasionally, until soft and translucent. Add the rice and stir to coat the grains well with the fat. Pour in the wine, bring to the boil, add salt and pepper, and simmer gently, stirring. Add the stock containing the pureed asparagus gradually as it becomes absorbed, stirring often. Continue adding stock as required - you may need only as much as 600ml - until creamy and the grain is al dente. Stir in the rest of the butter and serve garnished with the heated asparagus tips. Pass the parmesan around.