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Asparagus Risotto

Ingredients

2 lb of asparagus
1 shallot, chopped finely
3 ½ oz of vialone rice
2 oz of butter
1 cup of dry white wine
4 tablespoons of freshly grated parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper

Method

Break the ends off the asparagus stalks and discard.

Cut off the extreme tips and chop the rest of the stalks.

Blanch the tips in boiling water. Remove the tips with a slotted spoon and set aside.

Cook the stalks in the same water until they go soft. In a blender, puree the stalks with their cooking water to make a thick stock.

Add dry white wine, and simmer over a low heat. In a pan, melt half of the butter and cook the shallot until it turns soft.

Add the rice to the pan and let it begin to absorb the butter before adding a ladle of the asparagus stock. Keep stirring until it is absorbed.

Stir in the tips and add another ladle of stock. Keep adding the stock, one ladle at a time, making certain not to drown the rice, until the rice is al dente (takes 15-20 mins).

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Cooking Tips:

  • Basil, rose petals, mint, rosemary, nasturtium flowers or pods and other edible flowers are great as a garnish for your fine dining and are a pleasant alternative to parsley.
  • Finely chopped fresh herbs will produce a stronger flavor.
  • Dried herbs are almost 4 times stronger than Fresh. If you are cooking with dried herbs and your recipe calls for fresh herbs you can reduce the amount accordingly.
  • When cooking with garlic or onions, rub your hands under your stainless steel faucet with the water running to get rid of the smell. For some reason the stainless steel works it’s magic and eliminates the odour completely.
  • Never soak diced vegetables in water before preparing them or they will lose all their nutrients.
  • Run wilted lettuce under cold water, shake it dry, wrap it in paper towels and place in your refrigerator over night. The next day it will have perked right up.
  • If you plan on doing any canning you can use vinegar to clean and deodorize any old jars you want to reuse and to remove fruit stains from your hands.