Risotto con gli Asparagi
I have tasted hundreds of risottos in the US, and far too many of them are not authentic. So here is the recipe for the real, delicious Italian risotto. This is a great seasonal recipe, one of my favorites, and a terrific Mother’s Day brunch idea. This is – hands down – the best recipe for Risotto con gli asparagi – or Asparagus Risotto – you will ever find.
For Italians, risotto is not a side dish, but a main course, deservedly the main attraction in a meal.
As in the case of pasta, risotto is not served overcooked, but al dente. Because of that,it doesn’t do well when reheated: it should just be eaten freshly made, immediately out of the pot. Over time, it will lose its texture, if not its flavor, and to some Italians, this is reason enough to make sure there are not any leftovers to reheat!
It’s perfectly fine for you to microwave leftover risotto from the night before(I in fact just did that myself!). But in a restaurant, reheated, clogged risotto is just not acceptable. This is why serious restaurants will warn you that if you order risotto it will take at least 20 minutes to prepare. The chef may have the base ready, but he or she will have no time-saving tricks when it comes to cooking the risotto: everyone, professional or not, must cook it at the last minute. As a result, not many restaurants can afford to have this dish on the menu. But you can find out what a real risotto is like – by making this recipe yourself and tasting the difference!
As for the type of rice, Carnaroli and Vialone Nano are the best, but Arborio will work as well. No brown rice for this recipe: risotto is traditionally made with white rice. Using brown rice would be considered an entirely different recipe, not a risotto. Also, some restaurants use parboiled rice, mainly because it doesn’t overcook. However, the consistency is rubbery when you bite into it, and I am not keen on it.
One note: Do not rinse the rice before using it in a risotto.
As for the broth, it is best to use a great one, preferably homemade. If you have my app already, you know that it only takes five minutes of active work to make a delicious homemade broth. It really makes a huge difference in the taste of the recipe. You will add it to your risotto gradually, always hot, so that the risotto never stops boiling.
|Total time: 35 minutes
- 5-6 cups homemade broth
- ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 Tbsp. butter
- ½ onion, small (about 3.5 oz.), chopped
- 1 lb. asparagus
- 1 tsp. salt (if broth is not too salty, otherwise skip)
- 2 cups rice: Carnaroli, Vialone Nano or Arborio
- 1/3 cup dry white wine
- ¼ cup heavy cream (optional)
- ¾ cup Parmigiano-Reggiano
- 2 pots: a heavy bottom stainless-steel 5-quart in which to cook the risotto and another one for the broth.
- Chef’s knife and cutting board
- Wooden spoon
Rest for one minute and serve, dusted with some optional freshly ground black pepper and more Parmigiano-Reggiano to pass at the table.