Okay, okay, okay…..
I promise this will be the last risotto of this season.
But is was really good (I know, I always say that).
Remember this – the best lamb I ever made?
Plus the leftovers made a great risotto!
Risotto with Lamb and Asparagus
Total time: 30 minutes
- 2/3 cup Arborio rice (or other rice specifically for risotto – Carnaroli or Vialone Nano)
- 1/2 cup (4oz, 125ml) dry, white wine
- 2 1/4 cups (18oz, 500ml) chicken stock
- 2 tsp butter
- 1/2 cup (2oz, 60gr) Parmesan cheese – freshly grated
- 4 green garlic, thinly sliced including green tops
- 6oz (180gr) asparagus, cut into 1″ lengths
- 1 medium carrot, chopped
- 6oz (180gr) cooked lamb, cut into small pieces
- 1/4 cup chopped chives
- 2 tbs chopped fresh oregano
- 1/4 tsp cumin
- 2 tsp olive oil
- Heat chicken stock and keep hot over low heat.
- In medium sauce pan heat butter
- Add rice and sauté, stirring, for 2 – 3 minutes until rice has white center.
- Add white wine and stir.
- Start condimenti.
- When wine is almost absorbed add a 1/3 cup of stock and all of the asparagus, except tips, and stir. (No need to stir constantly but do stir from time to time.)
- When stock is almost absorbed add another 1/3 cup and continue adding 1/3 cup at a time and stirring.
- Before the last 1/3 cup is added taste a few kernels of rice. They should be just ‘al dente’ – slightly resistant to the tooth but fully cooked. If more stock is needed add it a tbs at a time and waiting until almost completely absorbed. At this point risotto will be thick but not stiff – there will still be visible liquid and it will not hold it’s shape on a plate.
- Add the Parmesan and the condimenti, stir well, pour into a bowl or risotto platter and serve immediately.
- It will continue to absorb liquid and the leftovers (if any) will be quite stiff. The risottos that we have eaten in northern Italy have all been served in soup plates (flattish bowls) and eaten with a spoon – not a fork.
- Sauté carrot and asparagus for 5 minutes or until just starting to get tender.
- Add green garlic, lamb and cumin, sauté 5 minutes longer.
- Add herbs, turn heat to very low, cover and keep warm until needed for risotto.
Spring arrived on Friday.
I’ve been waiting for it to get warm so I could do the ‘spring cleaning’.
We heat with wood.
If you have never used wood for heat you have no idea how filthy it is.
We have a stove as well as a fireplace and they are both used every day all winter long.
There is no point in doing any sort of serious cleaning in the spring until the fires are done.
We cleaned them both – the forecast better be right because the fires have stopped until next winter.
S0, Friday I started the spring cleaning. I hoped I could get the entire house cleaned in two days.
I was wrong.
I was also wrong about the fact that I was ‘spring cleaning.’
Cleaning, at least for me, is work intensive and mind-numbingly boring.
So my mind wanders.
It wandered back to my mother doing her spring cleaning.
I realized that I was merely cleaning – and likely not doing a very thorough job at that.
I was not washing all the walls and ceilings.
I did hoover the cobwebs.
I was not washing down all the wood furniture (chairs, tables, etc.), and then, of course, going over it all again with furniture polish.
I did dust it all with my trusty micro-fiber cloths.
I didn’t take all of the rarely used dishes out of the cupboards, wash them, wash out the inside of the cupboards and then put it all back.
Maybe I’ll do it later.
I did wash all the floors.
But I used a mop.
My mother was convinced that one could not get a floor properly clean unless one was using a scrub brush on one’s hands and knees. Now I don’t know if that conviction changed once she no longer had daughters in the house to do the task, but that was her philosophy when I was growing up.
And I didn’t rinse them and I didn’t wax them.
I didn’t wash the windows (mon mari’s contribution – he tells me he’ll have it all done sometime in May).
I didn’t take the mattresses outside and beat them and air them.
Apparently, I didn’t do any spring cleaning. I believe my mother would say I ‘gave it a lick and a promise’.
Still, it took me three full days of solid work.
Sometimes, having lower standards is a good thing.