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Asparagus Risotto


Asparagus adds fresh flavor to this classic risotto dish from chef Marco Canora's "Salt to Taste" cookbook. Top with quail egg, if desired, for an elegant finish. Photo credit: John Kernick

Source: The Martha Stewart Show, May 2010


  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large onion, peeled and very finely chopped
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups Arborio or other short-grained rice
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 6 to 8 cups Easter Broth, or store-bought low-sodium chicken broth, heated
  • 1 pound asparagus, trimmed and thinly sliced, plus shaved tops for garnish
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, plus more, shaved, for garnish
  • 1/2 cup Asparagus Puree
  • 6 to 8 quail eggs, for serving (optional)


  1. Heat 2 tablespoons butter and olive oil in a large high-sided skillet over medium heat. Add onion and season with salt and pepper; cook, stirring occasionally, until it begins to soften, about 5 minutes.

  2. Increase heat to high and add rice; stir to coat. Cook, stirring, until rice is no longer chalky and grains begin to pop, 2 to 3 minutes. Add wine and bring to a boil; let cook until rice absorbs liquid, about 1 minute.

  3. Add enough broth to just cover the rice, about 2 cups. Simmer, stirring and scraping rice away from sides occasionally. Cook until almost all the liquid is absorbed, about 5 minutes. Add another 2 cups of broth, or just enough to cover; simmer, stirring and scraping rice away from sides occasionally, about 5 minutes more.

  4. Add another cup of broth to rice mixture. Cook, stirring frequently, until rice absorbs broth, about 3 minutes. Add a little more broth, and let simmer, stirring frequently, until almost all the liquid is absorbed, about 3 minutes more.

  5. Reduce heat and stir in asparagus. Season with salt and pepper and add 1/4 cup broth. Simmer, stirring constantly, adding broth, 1/4 cup at a time, until rice is tender. Remove from heat and stir in grated cheese, remaining 3 tablespoons butter, and asparagus puree. Divide evenly between serving bowl and crack a quail egg into each. Garnish with shaved asparagus tops and cheese; serve immediately.

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