Have you ever seen purple asparagus? I’ve had purple carrots but this is the first time I have seen purple asparagus and of course I had to buy some. From my experience with purple carrots I realized that if you cook them in water they turn back to there original colour, it is only their outer skin that is purple. Roasting them keeps them purple too but since they were very tender shoots I decided to slice them thinly and pop them in the risotto at the last minute.
Risotto is summer might seem a bit odd but when the temperatures drops from 23C to 17C overnight it’s a good excuse to eat risotto. I always use Jamie’s basic risotto recipe and add from there.
1 cup risotto rice
2.5 cup chicken stock
1/2 cup white wine
3 tbsp olive oil
1 small onion
3 cloves garlic
1 bunch of asparagus, thinly sliced
50g hot smoked salmon
50g Parmesan cheese, I used Pecorino instead
Zest of one lemon
1/2 tbsp butter
salt & black pepper to season
Heat the stock in a pan.
In another pan, heat the olive oil, add the onions and garlic and fry very slowly for about 10 minutes until soft but not coloured.
Add the rice and turn up the heat, keep stirring
After a minute it will look slightly translucent. Add the wine and keep stirring.
Allow wine to reduce and alcohol flavours to evaporate.
Once the vermouth or wine has cooked into the rice, add your first ladle of hot stock and a good pinch of salt.
Turn down the heat to a simmer so the rice doesn’t cook too quickly on the outside.
Keep adding ladlefuls of stock, stirring to release the creamy starch from the rice, allowing each ladleful to be absorbed before adding the next.
This will take around 15 minutes. Taste the rice if not cooked carry on adding stock until the rice is soft but with a slight bite.
If you run out of stock before the rice is cooked, add some boiling water.
Add the asparagus and season, not too much salt though as the cheese is salty. Stir through.
Add the Parmesan, lemon zest, butter and salmon and stir briefly.
Place a lid on the pan and rest for a few minutes before serving, this lets the cheese become gooey.