Asparagus Risotto

It’s been fun to see what sort of recipes I could come up with using Knorr Chicken Concentrate Stock and this one is definitely a keeper.  I love Risotto, no two ways about it.  It’s fancy Italian rice and has a creamy, yummy texture and flavor.  Asparagus is at peak this time of year and you’ll find it plentiful and nicely priced this month as well. So, stock up on some asparagus and give this one a whirl.  I haven’t cooked risotto all that many times at home, but it’s not hard.  You just have to add that stock a little at a time to get the creamy texture of risotto right.

Risotto ingredients

You’ll need Arborio rice, fresh asparagus, shredded Parmesan cheese, shallots or onions, and white wine.  I used white cooking wine for this one, but whatever you have around will work.

And don’t forget the Knorr Chicken Concentrate Stock.  This recipe calls for exactly 3 1/2 cups, which is exactly what one of these cute little packets will make.  Someone pointed out that the stock needs to be hot and that is correct.  I use the Knorr stock and heat it up in a separate pot, adding 1/2 cup at a time of hot stock.

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We are so fancy around here and use pie pans for all sorts of stuff, like these chopped up onions.   The recipe calls for shallots, but I really couldn’t see paying $4.99 a pound for those, when a sweet onion will do.

blanched asparagus

Snap the ends and chop up a bundle of asparagus.

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Add to a slow boil for just 2 minutes, remove from heat.

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Sautee onions in a bit of butter.  That’s always good, right?!

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Add one cup of rice and sautee that for a few minutes, adding the wine to cook down first.  Then you start adding the chicken stock 1/2 cup at a time.  The risotto will cook down and absorb all that yummy flavor and get really creamy.  Mix in the Parmesan cheese at the end, as well as the cooked asparagus.

Asparagus Risotto

Season with salt and pepper to taste and enjoy the creamy, rich, delish flavor of Asparagus Risotto.

I loved it and this is a really easy recipe that I found on Simply Recipes, you can click here for the printable version.  I’m keeping this one handy.

Asparagus Risotto

1 lb. asparagus

3 Tbsp. plus 1 Tsp. butter

1/2 cup chopped shallots

1 cup arborio rice

1/2 cup dry white wine (or 1 Tbsp. lemon juice and 1/4 cup water)

About 3 1/2 cups Knorr  chicken concentrate stock,  can substitute some of the asparagus cooking water for stock. (heated and simmering to add to the risotto)

1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Salt and pepper

Method:

  1. Prepare the asparagus by breaking off discarding the tough ends (about the last inch of the spear).  Cut into 1 to 1 1/2 inch pieces (tips longer, base shorter).  If your asparagus are especially large, cut into even smaller bite size pieces.  Bring a saucepan with a part of water to a boil.  Blanch the asparagus pieces for 2 minutes.  As the end of two minutes, use a slotted spoon to remove the asparagus pieces to an ice water bath to shock asparagus into a vibrant green color to stop the cooking.  Drain from ice water bath and set aside.
  2. In a 3 or 4 quart saucepan, heat 3 Tbsp. butter on medium heat.  Add the shallots and cook for a few minutes until translucent.  Add the rice and cook for 2 minutes more, stirring until nicely coated.
  3. While the shallots are cooking, bring the stock to a simmer in a saucepan.
  4. Add the wine.  Slowly stir, allowing the rice to absorb the wine.  Once the wine is almost completely absorbed, add 1/2 cup of stock to the rice. Continue to stir until the liquid is almost completely absorbed, add 1/2 cup of stock to the rice.  Continue to stir until the liquid is almost completely absorbed, adding more stock in 1/2 cup increments.  Stir often to prevent the rice from sticking to the bottom of the pan.  Continue cooking and stirring rice, adding a little bit of broth at a time, cooking and stirring until it is absorbed, until the rice is tender, but still firm to the bite, about 15 to 20 minutes.  Remove from heat.
  5. Gently stir in the Parmesan cheese, the remaining 1 tsp. butter, and the asparagus.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Serve immediately.
  6. Serves 4

This is totally delicious and we all enjoyed the flavor of this risotto.  I hope you’ll give it a try!

{I’m part of the Knorr4, sharing recipes using Knorr products and I’m compensated for my time to do so.}

Linking up to Jen’s Tasty Tuesday today.


- Rhoda


Comments

  1. This looks delicious and I will definitely give this a try! I’ve been following your blog for a while and wish to thank you for all the wonderful inspiration!

  2. Hi Rhonda…..I’m a terrible cook and I’m confused…

    If you add the iced asparagus to the rice, won’t it cool the whole dish down? How do you stop the cooking, yet keep the asparagus warm?? Adding cold asparagus to hot rice just sounds awful!

    Also, I was taught to snap the asparagus wherever it wanted to snap, which is often toward the middle, rendering almost half the piece inedible. Yet you said to chop off only about an inch off the ends…which is correct? My husband once tried to discard less and cook more, and the stalks were really hard and awful. Should you definitely snap wherever it wants to snap, or can you simply chop an inch off in this recipe?

    Thanks so much!
    Kate

    • Hi, Kate, so when you snap asparagus, most of the time in my experience, it does snap off near the ends. Works for me most all the the time. So, I don’t think you’ll waste all that good stalk if you try that. This is a recipe from Simply Recipes and I followed it & it worked out great for me. I did snap them off about an inch from the ends and that seemed to be a good place that they wanted to break. As far as the ice bath for the blanched asparagus, I did not do that part. I simply took them out of the hot water and let them sit until it was time to add to the hot rice. The iced bath is simply to keep that deep green color, but they were fine without it for me. The hot rice would have heated them up anyway, I would think. It really is a simple recipe and easy to do. Loved the flavors!

  3. Rhoda,
    Thanks for sharing this recipe. We have some asparagus growing in our garden, and I can’t wait until I have enough spears to make this dish. I usually substitute vegetable stock when I make risotto because my husband is allergic to chicken.

  4. This sounds yummy! I love asparagus but didn’t know this was the best time of year for it. I am definitely going to have to buy some now.

  5. Sounds and looks delicious.

  6. Thanks for this recipe Rhoda, it looks like just the thing to make for dinner tonight. That Knorr stock looks like a great product. I know that the other mixes that I have tried that they make are so flavorful. Looks delicious!

  7. Sophisticated Stationery says:

    This looks so delicious! I can’t wait to try it!

  8. This sounds delicious!! I think to make it even simpler I am going to substitute orzo pasta for the rice. Then I’ll just use a small amount of liquid. :) It won’t have the creamy texture but will still be delish.

  9. Mmm. That looks delicious. I usually make my risotto with mushrooms, but look what a change asparagus makes! I think this will be on the menu this week!

  10. Hi Rhoda
    Just a little tip for those who haven’t made risotto before – you should have you stock heated up in a separate pan – don’t add it cold this ensures that the rice is cooked through and you get that lovely creamy texture!

    • Megan, you are so right. I went back and added that just to clarify. Using the Knorr stock, it would be heated up anyway, but if you’re using regular canned stock, definitely heat it up to a simmer in a stockpot, then add.

  11. Rhoda,

    I made this dish last night – used scallions for the first time (they are so lovely!). I also grilled chicken with lemon pepper marinade. My husband said the dish was like one you would find in a upscale restaurant! Thanks so much for sharing this one!

    Helen

  12. I just made this a bit differently since I was missing some things but it was amazing. I only had 2 1/2 cups of chicken stock so I added a cup of water, I also steamed the asparagus instead of boiling it. I felt like it needed just a little something so I cut up two chicken thighs and sauteed them in olive oil, lots of garlic, salt and pepper and tossed that in as well. It’s Sooooo good. Thank you for the inspiration!

  13. Made tonight for dinner – turned out fantastic! I added sliced baby portabella mushrooms with the onions before I put in the rice and it really added some great flavor.

  14. If you can buy asparagus fresh from the farm, you won’t need to snap off the ends. Its basically the only time I eat asparagus when I can get it fresh from the farm in season.

    I like to post lots of asparagus recipes during this time, I will also be doing asparagus risotto soon. I don’t do it in the detail you do though. I also use sweet onion for my risotto, Vidalia is perfect when you can get them.

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+Rhoda Southern Hospitality