I have definitely embraced the browned butter trend. These days I love to use it in cookies, make it into a sauce with sage or thyme, or in risotto. We happen to love asparagus in our house so I often add it to risotto, but this recipe is flexible and would work well with other vegetables. —Kelsey Banfield
onion, finely chopped
1 1/2 cups
chicken stock (homemade preferred, but Knorr cubes are fine, too)
Trim the asparagus and blanch it in a pot of boiled water. Once it is tender enough to be speared with a fork, drain the water and cut the asparagus into 2" pieces. Set aside.
In a low-wide saucepan, or a specialty risotto pan if you have one, heat 4 T. of butter over medium heat. Allow the butter to warm until it gets bubbly and turns a golden brown and has a nutty fragrance. This takes a little under 2 minutes.
Add the chopped onion to pan and allow it to simmer in the browned butter until translucent and tender. About 4-5 minutes.
Next, add the rice and stir until it is coated with the butter and well-mixed with the onion, then add the wine and deglaze the bottom of the pan, scraping up any browned bits.
Simmer until the wine has almost evaporated. Then, add 1/2 c. of the chicken stock and stir until it is completely absorbed. Continue adding the chicken stock by 1/2 c., stirring constantly, until it is all absorbed. About 10 minutes.
Once all the chicken stock has been added, cook until the rice is tender to the bite. About 8-10 minutes. Then remove risotto from heat and stir in the remaining parmesan and butter. Taste the risotto and if it needs more salt add the Kosher salt pinch by pinch, stirring after each addition until it suits your taste. (I find that when I use unsalted homemade stock I need to add salt, but I don't when I use the Knorr bouillon cubes which are already salty).
Finally, using a wooden spoon, stir the asparagus pieces into the risotto and finish off with a few cranks for black pepper if you want. Serve hot.
Home cook, food blogger, cookbook author, wine lover, avid traveler, and mother of two young children. Check out my books: The Naptime Chef: Fitting Great Food into Family Life (2012), and The Family Calendar Cookbook: From Birthdays to Bake Sales, Good Food to Carry You Through the Year (2015), Running Press.