It’s asparagus season.
And asparagus inspires quick, simple meals that taste of summertime freshness.
One of my favorite dishes to make is a light scallion and asparagus soup. However, this week, I’ve used the combination for risotto with subtle but tasty results.
For two portions, you’ll need:
2/3 cup of Arborio rice
1 glass of coiffable white wine
1/2 litre of vegetable stock
2 glugs of good quality cooking oil
3 fat scallions
6-8 stalks of asparagus, woody ends removed
1/2 a lemon
Finely chop the shallot. Heat one glug of oil and soften the shallot in it. Add the rice, and coat it until all grains are shiny from the oil.
Then add the wine and allow it to cook off. Before the wine has completely evaporated, add enough stock to cover the rice and simmer. Keep an eye on it, giving it a stir regularly. As the stock cooks off, add more.
While the rice is cooking, heat the remaining oil in a pan, chop the asparagus, and finely slice the scallions. Add the asparagus and scallions to the pan, season with salt, and sauté over a medium heat for three to five minutes—enough to soften the asparagus while maintaining a firmness to the bite.
After about 10 minutes of regularly stirring and topping up with stock, start testing the consistency of the rice—again, you’re looking for it to be cooked while still firm to the bite.
Once you feel it’s about a minute away from being ready, add in the asparagus and scallions, and a small drop of stock if needed. Stir through, and allow up to a minute for the flavors to infuse and the stock to be fully absorbed.
Season with black pepper and the juice of half a lemon—and serve.
Author: Hilda Carroll
Image: Flickr/Katrin Gilger; author’s own
Editor: Yoli Ramazzina