Asparagus Lemon Risotto


  • Asparagus
  • 1.2 litres vegetable stock
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 15g butter
  • 100g finely chopped brown onion
  • 225g arborio rice
  • 4 tbsp dry white wine
  • 1 large fresh mint sprig, leaves picked and finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp double cream
  • Finely grated zest ½ lemon
  • 50g finely grated pecorino cheese


Cut the asparagus tips off and set to one side. Roughly chop the stalks, and cook in a pan of salted water for 6-8 minutes until very tender. Remove, drain well, then tip into a food processor and blend to a smooth purée. Set aside. Drop the asparagus tips into the boiling water and cook for 2-3 minutes until just tender. Drain, then dry well on kitchen paper. Heat the oil and butter in a pan, add the onion and stir over a medium heat until soft. Add the rice and stir well. Add the white wine and simmer gently, stirring, until it has been absorbed. Add a ladleful of the hot stock and stir until all the stock has been absorbed. Continue adding stock for 20-25 minutes, stirring frequently, until the rice is creamy and tender. Stir the asparagus purée into the risotto with the cream, lemon zest, mint and pecorino, followed by three quarters of the asparagus tips. Spoon the risotto into warmed deep plates, scatter the rest of the tips on top of each plate and shave over a little more pecorino to serve.

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