Vegetable Risotto

I’m laughing at these photos because they are so bad- only because my family was so hungry and there was no time for photography.

Halfway through cooking and the dish is getting creamy already.

But trust me- this risotto is heavenly.

It is based off of Ina Garten’s Spring vegetable risotto, but I love mushrooms and my family hates peas so I changed up the flavors a bit.

Just sauté the mushrooms first to develop flavor otherwise they will be bland mushy little messes.

Toast the rice in olive oil and butter. Then add in your hot broth, wine, salt, pepper, Herbs de Provence (what else) a few red pepper flakes and the veggies. I love using frozen spinach- so convenient in the winter when we do not have the best produce around. Asparagus and artichokes round out the vegetables. Lemon and wine brighten it all up and then a decadent dollop of mascarpone cheese to thicken the sauce and make the dish creamy.

Other than the mascarpone, it is a relatively healthy dish full of vegetables. If you want to leave out the cheese, you can add reduced fat cream cheese instead or just leave it out altogether.

vegetable Risotto

  • 2 cups Risotto

  • 32 oz. vegetable or chicken stock

  • 1/2 cup white wine

  • 1 heaping tsp kosher salt

  • 1/2 tsp black pepper

  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

  • 1 tsp Herbs de Provence

  • 1 cup mushrooms, sliced

  • 2 cups asparagus, trimmed and cut into 2″ pieces

  • 1- 12oz jar marinated artichoke hearts, chopped- save the liquid from the jar or can.

  • 1 cup thawed frozen spinach- squeezed dry

  • 1/2 cup frozen peas, thawed (optional)

  • 1/4 cup mascarpone cheese

  • zest of one lemon- about 1 heaping TBSP

  • 2 TBSP fresh lemon juice

  • 2 TBSP unsalted butter

  • 2 TBSP olive oil

Sauté the mushrooms in a bit of olive oil and butter and then set aside.

Method- Prep time 10 minutes, cooking time- 45 minutes

  • In a large dutch oven on medium high heat, add 1 TBSP of BUTTER and 1 TBSP of OLIVE OIL. Add the MUSHROOMS to the pot. Sauté for 5-7 minutes until the mushrooms become browned on the edges. Remove the mushrooms from the pot, set aside.
    Pour STOCK into another medium size sauce pan and heat until just steaming.
  • Add the additional OLIVE OIL & BUTTER to the pan and toast the RISOTTO for 5 minutes until opaque.
    On medium heat, gently ladle in the hot STOCK one ladle at a time, stirring the risotto constantly until the stock is absorbed. Continue adding stock until risotto is plump and has just a tiny amount of bite- this will take about 15-20 minutes.
  • Add the WINE, SALT, PEPPER, RED PEPPER FLAKES and HERBS de PROVENCE. Stir well to combine until the liquid is absorbed. Add back in the MUSHROOMS, ASPARAGUS and ARTICHOKES. Gently with a fork, add in the SPINACH and fluff the risotto/rice and the spinach together. Finally, stir in the MASCARPONE and PEAS and IF needed the LIQUID from the ARTICHOKES. Cook for another minute or two.
    REMOVE from heat and cover the dish.
  • Let the risotto rest, off heat, for 5 minutes. Finally, add in the lemon zest and juice. Stir well to combine all the flavors. Check for seasonings and add in more salt etc. if desired.
Toasting the risotto is key.
A small dollop of mascarpone cheese brings the dish together.

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