Asparagus and Lemon Risotto
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 4 shallots, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 2 sticks celery, chopped small
- 20 ounces arborio or risotto rice (2 1/2 cups)
- 8 cups (64 ounces) chicken stock, warmed
- 2 pounds asparagus, chopped in 2-inch pieces
- 12 fresh sage leaves, finely chopped
- 2 sprigs rosemary, finely chopped
- Juice and grated zest of 1 lemon (1/4 cup)
- 8 ounces feta cheese
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 teaspoon white pepper
- Parsley and grated Parmesan, to garnish
Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the shallots, garlic and celery and sauté for 4 minutes. Add the rice and stir well. Add 2 ladles of the warmed stock and stir until the rice has absorbed most of the liquid. Keep adding the stock gradually for about 10 minutes more, stirring constantly.
Add the asparagus, herbs and lemon zest and cook gently, stirring constantly for another 10 minutes. Do not let the mixture become dry; add more stock as necessary.
When rice is cooked, mix in the feta cheese, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Sprinkle with parsley and Parmesan cheese just before serving.