Springtime Risotto with Asparagus

Springtime Risotto with Asparagus
Serves 8
This recipe is the feature of our Cook with Your Kids class in May. This rich and creamy rice is a great way to showcase any springtime vegetables.
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  2. 6 cups low sodium chicken broth
  3. 1 1/2 cups Arborio or short grain white rice
  4. 2 T olive oil
  5. 1/2 chopped white onion
  6. 1/2 cup apple juice or dry white wine
  7. 1 lb asparagus, trimmed, cut in 2" pieces
  8. 3T butter
  9. 3/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
  10. Juice and rind of 1/2 lemon
  11. salt and pepper
  12. Fresh chives for garnish
  1. Bring the chicken broth to a simmer in a saucepan. Reduce the heat to low to keep the broth hot.
  2. In a heavy saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the chopped onions and saute until translucent (about 4 minutes). Turn the heat to medium.
  3. Add the rice and stir about 3 minutes until the rice grains are translucent. Add the apple juice, stirring constantly. Cook until liquid evaporates.
  4. Add 1/2 cup of the hot broth and stir constantly until the liquid is almost absorbed.
  5. Continue adding broth in this way and stirring almost constantly (about 20 minutes) until the liquid is creamy and the rice is al dente. The mixture should not be too soupy or too dry. Use your observational skills to decide if more or less broth is needed to cook the rice. Stirring helps to release the starch from the rice, creating a creamy dish.
  6. About 15 minutes into the cooking process, add prepared asparagus, allowing the asparagus to cook while the rice cooks.
  7. Once your dish is cooked, remove from heat. Add butter and grated parmesan, stirring until melted and incorporated.
  8. Finish off with the juice and grated rind of the lemon. Season risotto to taste with salt and pepper. Sprinkle with chopped chives. Serve.