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Risotto alla Primavera

Risotto alla primavera celebrates the delicate flavors of springtime.

Risotto alla Primavera

Ingredients

6 cups low-sodium chicken broth
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
1 medium leek (white part only), sliced crosswise into thin rings
2 small garlic cloves, chopped
2 cups Arborio rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 pound asparagus, trimmed, cut on diagonal in 1-inch pieces
1 medium zucchini, thinly sliced in rounds
1 yellow squash, thinly sliced in rounds
1 cup frozen peas, thawed
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
3/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese plus more for serving
1 small zucchini, julienned on long side of zucchini
2 small carrots, curled on long side of carrot

Cooking Instructions

Serve it as a first course, as the Italians do, followed by fish or chicken, or offer it as a light main course on a warm evening. Pair it with an antipasto and warm, crusty rolls.

In a medium saucepan over moderate heat, bring the broth to a simmer. Cover; keep warm over low heat.

In a risotto pan over medium-low heat, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter with the oil. Add the onion, leek, and garlic. Sauté until translucent, about 5 minutes.

Add rice and stir until it is translucent at edges but still opaque in center, about 3 minutes. Add wine and simmer, stirring often, until almost all liquid is absorbed, about 1 minute. Continue in this way, adding broth 1 cup at a time, and stirring often, until the rice is half cooked, about 8 minutes. Be sure to allow each cup of liquid to be absorbed before adding the next.

Stir in the asparagus. Continue adding broth by cupful's and stirring until rice is almost tender, about 5 minutes longer. Stir in the peas, yellow squash, zucchini rounds, and the parsley. Cook until rice is tender but still firm to bite and the mixture is creamy, about 2 minutes longer.

Remove from heat. Add the cheese and the remaining 2 tablespoons butter. Stir until cheese and butter melt. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Garnish with the grated zucchini and carrots. Serve; pass the additional cheese at the table.

Serves 6.

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