Spring Risotto

I can't even remember the last time I made risotto. It used to be the thing when I was in high school. For some reason I remember making a lot of risottos in my mom's kitchen. Maybe because it's not hard to make, but it's so labor intensive it makes you feel like you accomplished something pretty grown-up? I'm not sure. Either way, I'm really glad I gave this risotto from this month's Cooking Light a try. It tastes way more unhealthy than it is -- always a good thing. Plus, I'm pretty sure I burned like 400 calories just from all the stirring. That's possible, right?

Spring Risotto
From Cooking Light
  • 1 pound asparagus, trimmed and cut into 3/4-inch pieces
  • 2 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil (2 teaspoons if using a non-stick pan)
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup uncooked Arborio rice
  • 1 cup frozen shelled edamame
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup 1/3-less-fat cream cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 ounce shaved Parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
Bring 4 cups water to a boil in a saucepan. Add asparagus, and cook for 2 minutes. Drain. Bring 2 cups water and broth to a simmer in the same saucepan.

Meanwhile, heat another large saucepan over medium heat. Add olive oil, and swirl to coat. Add onion; cook 4 minutes. Add garlic, and cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Stir in rice, edamame, and salt; cook for 1 minute. Stir in 1 cup broth mixture; cook for 4 minutes or until liquid is nearly absorbed, stirring constantly. Add remaining broth mixture, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring constantly until liquid is absorbed before adding more (about 20-25 minutes total).

Stir in asparagus, cream cheese, and pepper; cook 1 minute. Spoon risotto into 4 bowls. Top each serving with 1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese; sprinkle evenly with thyme.