I can't think of a more perfect spring time meal that this Lemon & Asparagus Risotto. We served it with garlic bread and a fresh salad for the perfect mid week lunch.
Right so who is good at procrastinating? Well, I am the queen of it. In fact, I would probably say it could be one of my best qualities..ha! Like the laundry that piles up everywhere, bills that need to be paid, the dog that needs to be walked, the 16 year old cross stitch that I have been working on and the dentist.
Mmmm, yes, the dentist.
So how often should we visit the dentist? Some people say every six months and some people will even let a year lapse before making a visit to the happiest place on the planet. Me on the other hand, I have a serious phobia and waited much longer that a year. I'm not saying how long I waited but lets just say it was a different millennium. I know, that has taken procrastinating to a new level.
All was going well, I have my teeth under control. Always brushing and flossing and I felt pretty good about not seeing the dentist. Until, one day early last summer when, ouch. Yes, I had to go. So, I really tried to grow up about the whole situation and face my biggest fear, the dentist.
Lucky for me, I had a recommendation to a good dentist. Well, were't they all supposed to be good? Let me tell you how my phobia started. A dodgy dentist with more good looks over common sense and diplomas. A huge infection and a hospital stay later I was scared off dentists for life. Never take a recommendation to a dentist in your twenties because your friend tells you he's cute. Never.
So early last July, I pretty much dragged myself kicking and screaming to that dreaded vinyl chair to see what my fate held in store for me. He was calm, cool and collected. Didn't have the cute factor as the dentist from Toronto back in the 90s, but I'm well past good looking dentist nowadays..ha! He went through my mouth, tooth by tooth and the assistant was busy writing stuff down. Kind of looked like a book she was writing to be honest. I tried not to think about it. It wasn't going to be that bad, I had a good feeling. Wrong. I was to have four wisdom teeth extracted and more fillings than I really want to fess up to. It was a mess. My biggest nightmare had come true. I was about to spend my life, along with all my money, in a dentist chair.
Here we are ten months later, I'm still alive, have no wisdom teeth left, more fillings than I can count, pretty much zero money, but I am over my fear of dentists. In fact today when I got out of that chair for the last time, it almost felt a little sad. Ok, maybe not...ha! But I no longer have a stigma over dentists and feel I can walk in with my head held high and take whatever comes my way. Which hopefully after a zillion dentists visits over this past year, won't be too much.
So if you're like me and terrified, it's not so bad.
And now we can focus on the risotto.
I actually cooked this today. Which is unusual for me to cook and write in the same day. Let's just say I felt inspired and found the time. Two things which don't often go hand in hand for me. Usually inspiration hits when I'm snowed under or I'm twiddling my tumbs waiting for creativity to hit. Today I got it right. Bonus.
If you aren't familiar with making risotto, it really isn't too difficult at all. You just have to pay attention and stir.
When cooking risottos sometimes you will need more stock and sometimes a little less. This usually depends on the type of pot you are using and how quickly the liquid is absorbing into the rice. I like to use a heavy bottomed stainless steel pot for making risotto and I always set the heat to medium-low once it starts to cook. This should help with the liquid being absorbed at the right temperature and the right time so you rice is cooked as well. If you get to the end and your rice is still a little hard, add more stock and reduce the heat as low as you can. This should help finish off the cooking of the rice.
Really that is the best advice I can give with making risotto. The recipe pretty much spells it all out for you below anyway.
Enjoy your cooking friends and I'll be back again in a few days!
Lemon & Asparagus Risotto
Serves 4 - 6 / Prep time: 15 minutes / Cook time: 40 minutes
1 1/2 Cups/325 grams of Arborio/ short grain rice
4 Cups/1 litre of vegetable stock
1 Cup/240 ml of cooking wine
1 Cup/100 grams of fresh grated parmesan cheese
1 medium onion, finely diced
1 good bunch of Asparagus, cleaned, trimmed and cut into 2 inch pieces
Zest of one lemon
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
2 garlic cloves, crushed
Small bunch of fresh chopped basil
In a large stainless steel pot add one tablespoon of the oil and the garlic, cook for a minute. Add the onion and cook until they soften, about 5 minutes.
Add the remaining tablespoon of olive oil and the rice. Stir for a few minutes until you notice the edges are translucent in colour. Next add all the wine and reduce heat to medium. Cook until all the liquid has absorbed. This will probably take about 2-3 minutes. Stir while cooking so it does not stick. Once all the liquid has absorbed add about 1 cup of the stock and the asparagus. Stir while cooking until all the liquid has absorbed. Continue adding stock gradually as the rice cooks and the stock is absorbed into the rice. Reserve about 1/2 cup of stock.
Add the cheese, remaining stock, lemon zest, butter, and basil Stir for a a minute or so. Remove from heat and serve immediately.
Can be topped with extra basil and parmesan when serving.
Click the downloadable link below to print recipe!
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Hello and thanks for stopping by. I'm Julia and I have a passion for wholesome fresh food. Here you can find what's cooking in my Spanish kitchen, with inspiration from my Newfoundland roots!
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