Risotto with Asparagus and Ramps
Recipe Type: Main
Cuisine: Italian
When one thinks of Italian food the first item to mind is often pasta, but don't forget risotto. Risotto is a versatile grain to use to welcome spring flavors and produce, like pungent ramps.
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 12 stalks of asparagus, peeled and cut into 1 inch pieces
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 cups low salt chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 small bunch of ramps – about 12 or so, cleaned and roots trimmed, stalks chopped and leaves sliced, separated
  • 1½ cups risotto rice, such as vialone nano, arborio or carnaroli
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • ½ cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • zest of one lemon
  1. In a large sauté pan, heat the butter until foaming, then add the asparagus and sauté until softened, about 3-4 minutes, depending on thickness. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from pan and set aside.
  2. Bring the broth to a boil in a large pot. Reduce the heat to very low; the broth should stay hot but not simmer and reduce.
  3. Add the olive oil to the large sauté pan, and place over medium heat. Add a handful of the chopped ramp stalks, and cook slowly, stirring frequently until softened, 1 to 2 minutes. Keep the remainder of the leaves for another use.
  4. Add the risotto rice to the pan. Cook, stirring constantly to coat the rice with the oil, about 3 minutes.
  5. Pour in the wine and cook, stirring constantly, until it’s mostly absorbed, about 4 minutes.
  6. Ladle in ½ cups of the broth, and stir. Adjust the heat to maintain a gentle simmer, and stir occasionally. When very little of the liquid remains, and the rice is dry enough that your stirring spoon leaves a trail showing the bottom of the pot, add in another ½ cup of broth, again stirring until it’s all absorbed. Continue adding broth in ½ cup increments, stirring, until the rice is nearly al dente; this is usually 12 to 16 minutes after the first addition of liquid.
  7. Stir in the ramp leaves and reserved asparagus. Add a bit more broth, and cook until al dente; do not overcook, and don’t feel you need to use all the stock. Add the lemon zest, cheese, and season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.
Recipe by Honest Cooking by Mercato Fabbrica at https://honestcooking.com/risotto-asparagus-ramps/