Enjoy this on a Meatless Monday with friends or for a special date and celebrate the next day with the leftovers.
Prep time: 20 minutes Cook time: 30 minutes Feeds five people
1 1/2 cups of Arborio rice
6 cups vegetable broth (preferably homemade)
1 pound portobello mushrooms, thinly sliced
1 pound white mushrooms, thinly sliced
1/2 pound of asparagus, cut into 1 inch pieces
2 shallots, diced
4 tablespoons butter
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
In a large 3 to 4 quart heavy saucepan over low heat, melt the butter and add the shallots with a pinch of salt. Cook shallots very slowly between 8-15 minutes. Add the asparagus and sauté for 5 minutes over medium heat. Add the rice and stir. Cook 5 minutes or until the grains are translucent around the edges. Be careful not to allow the grains or the onions to brown.
Reduce the heat to low. Add enough of the vegetable stock to barely cover the rice and stir often, until the liquid is mostly absorbed into rice. Once absorbed, add another batch of stock covering the rice and stir continuously again. There should be just enough liquid left to repeat at least 1 more time. It should take approximately 35 to 40 minutes for all of the liquid to be absorbed. After the last addition of liquid has been mostly absorbed, add the mushrooms and stir until risotto is creamy. Remove from the heat and stir in the Parmesan, lemon zest, and nutmeg. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.