I used a combination of purple and green asparagus here. H and I were at the green grocer when he spotted purple asparagus and got super excited – like jumping up and down excited, I wish I could have recorded him. It was super cute and me loving his enthusiasm for good food ended up buying a lot of asparagus…
So with all the asparagus I ended up buying, I decided to make asparagus and saffron risotto with the intention of making it a two for one meal, by using the leftovers the following night to make arancini – bonus!
For those of you with little munchkins running around I know risotto seems like an impossible task – so instead of standing in front of the stove for 30 or so minutes stirring away, add a few ladles at a time and then cover and come back in 5-10 minutes, give it a stir, add more stock and repeat until it has been all absorbed. It may not be quite as creamy but it will be delicious.
Asparagus and Saffron Risotto
- 3 bunches or asparagus (500g)
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 french shallots or 1 onion; finely chopped
- 1 clove garlic; finely chopped
- 2 cups arborio rice (400g)
- 1 cup white wine
- Pinch of saffron
- 6-8 cups stock (veggie or whatever you like)
- 1 cup parmesan cheese + extra to serve
- 3 tablespoons butter
Heat your stock in large saucepan and keep it warm. Break the woody ends off the asparagus and discard; then chop the asparagus into 2 or 3 (depending on the size of your asparagus). Set the asparagus tips to the side.
Add the oil, garlic and shallot to a large frying pan and sauté until softened. Add the rice and stir to coat in the oil. Add the wine and stir until it has absorbed. Add asparagus (expect the tips), saffron and a few ladles of stock and stir until absorbed. Continue adding a ladle at a time. Toward the end of cooking add the asparagus tips. The risotto is ready when all the stock is gone or the risotto is creamy and cooked through - but not mushy. About 25 minutes or so.
Add the butter and parmesan and stir until melted through. Serve with extra parmesan on top.