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
- 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)
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.