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Acquerello Asparagus Risotto

Chicago’s Quartino Ristorante & Wine Bar has an extensive menu featuring a wide array items to meet the needs of your vegetarian and vegan friends and family. Their tasty Acquerello Asparagus Risotto is one of many to try during your stay in the windy city.

“There is a true sense of culinary accomplishment when simple high quality ingredients are assembled in a focused manner.”
-Chef John Coletta of Quartino Ristorante & Wine Bar

Cook Time: 30 minutes
Serves: 4 to 6

5 c. Asparagus Broth
2 tbs. Extra-virgin olive oil
¼ c. White onion, finely diced
1 ½ c. Riso; Acquerello (risotto)
½ c. Dry white wine (such as pinot grigio)
1 c. Asparagus, puree
1 c. Asparagus, sliced paper thin on bias
2 tbs. Unsalted butter
1/3 c. Parmigiano Reggiano, grated
Sea salt, finely ground
White pepper, finely ground

In a heavy bottom pot bring the asparagus broth to a simmer and insert a 2 ounce ladle into the pot.

In another heavy bottom pot add the olive oil, onion and place over a medium flame. Stir this mixture using a wooden risotto spoon until it becomes translucent and tender. Add the Acquerello riso and continue to stir using the wooden risotto spoon for a brief minute. Add the white wine and simmer until the wine is almost evaporated. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Add the asparagus puree and continue to stir using a wooden risotto spoon.

Gradually add a ladle of the extracted asparagus broth with one hand and stir using a wooden spoon with the other hand. Continue to cook this mixture until the asparagus broth has been absorbed by the rice kernels. Reduce the flame to low and continue this process which should take a total of 18 minutes. It is very, very important to stir the rice during the entire cooking process.

Once the rice arrives at the al dente stage (firm to the bite), remove the pot from the stove and add the sliced fresh asparagus, butter and Parmigiano Reggiano cheese and continue to stir. A creamy consistency will begin to form (known as all’ onda, which means to have formed waves). Adjust seasoning to taste. Arrange the completed asparagus risotto onto a warm dinner plate, serve immediately and ENJOY!

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