Although I am not a vegetarian (my candied bacon sandwich is evidence of the contrary), I do appreciate a savory and filling dish that highlights the flavor of fresh vegetables. Since I'm from Stockton (the asparagus capital of California), naturally I love asparagus and my boyfriend digs anything made with zucchini so I went with that combination for this risotto. Some people tend to be intimidated by the idea of making risotto (I mean it sounds ultra fancy right?!) but the process is actually quite simple, there is just a lot of constant stirring involved. But all of the stirring is worth it in the end when you're perched in front of a heaping bowl of creamy and delicious risotto, not even the carnivores will complain about the lack of a protein!
- 4 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 cup minced onion (view my tutorial for chopping onions here)
- 2 cloves minced garlic
- 1 cup arborio rice
- 2 cups water
- 2 cups vegetable stock
- 1 cup chopped zucchini
- 1 cup chopped asparagus
- Grated parmesan (use at your own disgression)
1: Chop your asparagus and zucchini into similar sizes to ensure proper cooking.
3: Strain the veggies in a colander and run ice cold water over them (this stops the cooking and locks in the bright green color). Set aside.
4: Slowly bring 2 cups of water and 2 cups vegetable stock to a boil, mean while...
5: In a large saute pan, soften the minced onion with the vegetable oil and 1/2 teaspoon of salt on medium heat. Saute onions for 5 minutes, then add in minced garlic and rice and saute for another 4 minutes.
6: Add in a cup of the boiling vegetable stock mixture and stir continuously until all of the liquid is absorbed by the rice.
7: Add the vegetable stock mixture in increments of 1/2 cup, stirring constantly until the rice has absorbed all of the liquid and has reached a tender and creamy texture.
8: Stir in vegetables to warm thru, add salt and pepper to taste, and serve with grated parmesan cheese.
This recipe is just as delicious reheated as it is freshly prepared, perfect to make ahead for a intimate dinner party!