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Exciting news from Kate’s Thoughts for Food & a wonderful recipe: Purple Asparagus Risotto with Spring Onions

April 19, 2012

Oh where to begin?  Many exciting things to announce at Kate’s Thoughts for Food this week!  Starting today, Thursday posts will feature a seasonal and/or local ingredient recipe.  I will be trekking through local farmers’ markets, perusing CSA takings, and searching out seasonal finds in the grocery store to bring you new, original recipes for your kitchens!

This continued focus on fresh ingredients will go hand in hand with the launch of a new service at Kate’s Thoughts for Food: seasonal meal plans.  Starting May 4th, customers in the mid-Atlantic region (MD/DC/VA/Southeastern PA/southern NJ, and, of course, my wonderful home state of DE) can order meal plans that are catered specifically to what produce is in season in their region.  While I hope to launch the service in other regions soon, my home area will be my testing site.  (If you are interested in the product, but live outside of this region, please let me know where to start planning for next! ) Effective today, my website will start accepting orders for this new meal plan option in anticipation of the first plans being sent out May 4th.  I have been contemplating this additional product for a few months and I am so excited to finally launch!

And last, but certainly not least, it’s time to share my first seasonal recipe!  Although it feels more like summer with the weather we’ve been having in Maryland, it’s really only spring and that means asparagus season!  When I saw the purple variety at my local market I could not resist.  Sourced from Busy Corner Farm, a local Amish farm, the asparagus was just the right mix of crispness and sweetness.  A traditional risotto flavored with local spring onions from Sassafras Creek Farm seemed like the perfect way to highlight the seasonal veggie.

Asparagus Risotto with Spring Onions
Yields: 4 Servings

5 cups Chicken broth (I recommend home-made or low-sodium, organic broth)
1 tablespoon Olive oil
2 Spring onions (whites, peeled if necessary, and separated from greens, thinly sliced)
1 cup Arborio rice
2 Garlic cloves (minced)
1/4 cup Dry white wine (omit if you prefer)
1 pound Asparagus (trimmed and cut into 1″ pieces)
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese (shredded)
1/4 teaspoon Salt
1/8 teaspoon Freshly ground pepper

1. Bring broth to a simmer in a medium saucepan (do not boil). Keep warm over low heat.
2. In another medium saucepan, heat oil over medium heat. Add white portion of spring onions and saute until soft, about 4-5 minutes.
3. Add rice and garlic to onions, toasting rice for a couple of minutes, stirring often.  Add the wine; cook until the liquid is absorbed, stirring often, about 2 minutes.
4. Add broth one ladle at a time, stirring often, until each portion of broth is absorbed before adding the next, about 30 minutes total.
5. Stir in asparagus with last ladle full of broth. (Rice should be almost fully cooked with just a slight chew to it. You may not need to use all of the broth.)
6. Remove from heat and stir in cheese, salt, pepper, and green portion of spring onions.

Kate’s Thoughts

As you can see from the picture, I chose to top my risotto with some pea shoots for an extra bit of fresh flavor.  I would highly recommend if you have them available!  While the purple asparagus was delicious, this dish will be equally yummy with fresh green asparagus.

Also, as the recipe indicates, you may not need to use all 5 cups of chicken broth.  The grains will absorb different amounts of moisture so no two pots of risotto are the exact same.

This dish is filling enough to be served in larger portions as a main dish entree as well.  Enjoy!

Please contact me for more information regarding Busy Corner or Sassafras Creek Farms.

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