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Spring Risotto Recipe-8674

Photo by: Mark Shapiro
Comments: 0


Risotto Primavera

The vegetables used here can be varied according to availability but should always include tiny new peas.

Yield: Serves 4 to 6


  • 6 asparagus spears, trimmed, cut into 1-inch (2.5 cm) lengths
  • 1 cup (250 mL) peas (fresh or frozen)
  • 6 cups (1.5 L) homemade or high-quality prepared chicken stock (approximate)
  • ¼ cup (50 mL) extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbsp (25 mL) butter
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups (500 mL) short-grained Italian Arborio rice
  • ½ cup (125 mL) dry white wine
  • 1 small yellow zucchini, washed, trimmed and diced
  • 1 small green zucchini, washed, trimmed and diced
  • 1 cup (250 mL) grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • 2 tbsp (25 mL) chopped fresh basil
  • 2 tbsp (25 mL) chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper


1. In a large pot of lightly salted boiling water, cook asparagus and, if using, fresh peas for 2 minutes or until tender-crisp.(Frozen peas are added in step 5.) Drain and refresh under cold running water; drain and set aside.

2. In a large saucepan, bring chicken stock to a boil. Reduce heat to a slow simmer and keep the stock at this steady, slightly bubbling state throughout the rest of the cooking.

3. In a heavy-bottomed saucepan, heat olive oil and butter over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook for 2 minutes or until translucent. Stir in garlic; cook for 2 minutes longer. Add rice all at once; cook, stirring, for 2 minutes or until grains are well coated with butter and oil. Pour in wine; cook, stirring, for 1 minute or until wine is absorbed.

4. Using a ladle, start to add simmering stock ½ cup (125 mL) at a time. As each ladle of stock is added, stir the rice to keep it from sticking to bottom and sides of saucepan; do not add more until last addition is absorbed. If the stock is absorbed too quickly, reduce the heat to maintain a slow, steady simmer. Repeat this process, ladling in the hot stock and stirring, for 15 minutes. As you near the end of the cooking time, reduce the amount of stock to ¼ cup (50 mL) at a time.

5. Stir in asparagus, zucchini and, if using, frozen peas. Continue to cook, adding more stock as necessary, until the rice is tender but with a firm heart and overall creaminess. It should not be soupy or runny-looking. A minute before completion, stir in Parmigiano-Reggiano, basil and parsley. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.

© 2008 Kathleen Sloan-McIntosh

Nutritional Information

Nutrients per serving (% daily value)

Nutritional information is based on 6 servings and 1/8 teaspoon added salt per serving.

565kcal (28%)
222mg (22%)
21mg (35%)
100mcg RAE (3%)
32mg (11%)
895mg (37%)
7g (37%)
21g (32%)
5mg (25%)

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