Angela Hartnett’s asparagus risotto recipe

The secret to success is lots of Parmesan and lots of black pepper. Use any leftover risotto for arancini – cook the risotto again until thick and gelatinous, then roll it into balls, coat it in breadcrumbs and deep-fry until golden.

asparagus risotto
Jonathan Lovekin

SERVES 6 AS A STARTER OR 4 AS A MAIN

75g unsalted butter, cubed and chilled
2 tbsp olive oil
1 banana shallot, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
300g carnaroli risotto rice
200ml dry white wine
1 litre hot vegetable stock
A bunch of asparagus, woody ends discarded, stems chopped into rounds, tops whole
75g Parmesan, finely grated
A handful of flat-leaf parsley, leaves and stems chopped, to serve
Salt and freshly ground pepper

  1. Heat 20g of the butter and all the oil in a large pan over a low heat. Add the shallot and garlic, season with salt and pepper and fry for about 7-10 minutes, until the shallot is soft but not coloured.
  2. Add the rice, season again, and add another 20g of butter, stirring the rice to toast it, for 3-4 minutes. Add the wine and cook for about 2-3 minutes to evaporate the alcohol.
  3. Gradually add the hot stock, a ladleful at a time, stirring continuously and allowing the rice to absorb each addition before pouring in the next. Do not let the rice swim in the stock.
  4. After 14 minutes of adding and stirring, add the asparagus and cook, stirring, for a further 4 minutes, until the rice is al dente – the risotto should be pourable but firm and creamy enough to hold itself together. If it’s too thick, add a little more stock.
  5. Remove the pan from the heat and add the remaining butter and the Parmesan, stirring them through the risotto to emulsify and give the risotto a creamy consistency.
  6. Check the seasoning and finish with the parsley. Serve immediately.

Buy the book

the weekend cook
Our recipes are taken from The Weekend Cook by Angela Hartnett, to be published by Bloomsbury on 26 May, price £26. To order a copy for £22.10 with free UK delivery until 29 May, go to mailshop.co.uk/books or call 020 3176 2937.