In honor of the first Friday of Lent I’ve prepared a meat-free Lemon & Asparagus Risotto that anyone can enjoy. It’s a healthier option than pizza, more filling than fish and is super delicious. Thanks again Mom for the pretty linens!
Lemon & Asparagus Risotto
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
1 lb asparagus, trimmed & cut into 1″ chunks
1 onion, diced
3 garlic, minced
1 cup Arborio rice
2 lemons, zest & juice (~ 1/2 cup)
1/2 cup white wine
4 cups vegetable stock
1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
In a large deep skillet, heat the olive oil and the butter on medium high heat. Add the onion and garlic. Sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt. Sauté for 8 minutes. Add the Arborio rice, lemon zest and additional 1/2 teaspoon salt. Sauté another minute or two to combine all the flavors. Add the fresh squeezed lemon juice and the white wine. Stir to combine.
Set your timer for 30 minutes! Now during the next half hour slowly add the vegetable broth one ladle at a time (1/4 cup – 1/2 cup). You can check your emails or play Sudoku while the risotto is bubbling away! In a small skillet sauté the asparagus chunks in a little extra virgin olive oil about 4-5 minutes. When all the broth has been absorbed, sprinkle in the Parmesan cheese and the sautéed asparagus; stir to incorporate into the Risotto.
Now scoop out some Lemon & Asparagus Risotto into a pretty bowl and top with additional cheese.