April 13, 2022

Creamy Lemon Risotto with Asparagus



  • 1 Lb Asparagus, Ends Trimmed
  • 1 Tbsp Unsalted Butter
  • 1 Tbsp Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 Shallot, Finely Chopped
  • 3 Fresh Thyme Sprigs
  • 2 Cups Arborio or Carnaroli Rice
  • Fine Sea Salt
  • Freshly Ground Pepper
  • 1/4 Cup Dry White Wine
  • 6 Cups Chicken or Vegetable Broth, Heated to a Simmer
  • 2 Tsp Finely Grated Lemon Zest
  • 1/2 Cup Heavy Cream
  • 1/2 Cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 2 Tbsp Fresh Lemon Juice
  • 2 Tbsp Minced Fresh Parsley


  • Place the asparagus in a steamer basket and set over a saucepan of simmering water. Cover and steam until the spears are crisp-tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Cut into 1-inch (2.5-cm) pieces and set aside.

  • In a large sauté pan over medium heat, melt the butter with the olive oil. When the butter has  melted, add the shallot and cook, stirring often, about 5 minutes. Stir in the thyme sprigs and cook until the shallot is softened and translucent, about 3 minutes longer.

  • Add the rice and 1 tsp. salt to the pan, stirring to coat the grains of rice with the butter and oil. Raise the heat to medium-high, pour in the wine and stir until absorbed. Reduce the heat to medium and add a ladleful of the hot broth. Cook, stirring often, until the broth is absorbed. Reduce the heat to medium-low if necessary to maintain a gentle simmer. Continue to cook the risotto, adding the broth a ladleful at a time and stirring until it is absorbed, until the rice is tender but still pleasantly chewy, about 20 minutes.

  • Stir in the reserved asparagus, lemon zest, heavy cream and cheese. Then stir in the lemon juice and a final ladleful of broth to achieve a creamy texture. The risotto should not be too stiff or too runny; it should mound softly on a spoon. Sprinkle with the parsley, season with pepper and serve immediately.

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