Vegetable Risotto (Risotto Primavera) - dummies

By Mary Sue Milliken, Susan Feniger, Helene Siegel, Cesare Casella, Jack Bishop, Tom Lacalamita, Heather Dismore, Martin Yan, Dede Wilson, Joan H. Moravek, Kristin Eddy

You use nine vegetables in this attractive and satisfying risotto, each adding a different color, texture, and flavor. The various vegetables go into the saucepan at different times to ensure that you cook each one properly.

Close-up of a vegetable risotto.
Credit: © Woodcock

Preparation time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 25 minutes

Yield: 6 servings

1⁄2 cup olive oil

1 medium red onion, chopped

1 medium carrot, chopped

2 celery stalks, diced

4 fresh sage leaves, chopped, or 2 teaspoons dried sage

12 asparagus spears, tough ends snapped off and discarded, spears cut into 1-inch pieces, and tips reserved separately

1 yellow or red bell pepper, seeded and diced

1-2⁄3 cups Italian rice (arborio, carnaroli, or vialone nano)

1 cup white wine

7 cups simmering vegetable stock or water, divided

36 green beans (string beans), trimmed and halved crosswise

1⁄2 cup fresh or frozen peas

1 medium tomato, diced (seeds removed before dicing)

1 medium zucchini, diced

12 fresh basil leaves, coarsely chopped, or 2 teaspoons dried basil

2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley, or 2 teaspoons dried parsley

1⁄3 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

Salt and pepper to taste

  1. In a medium saucepan with a heavy bottom, heat the olive oil. Add the onion, carrot, celery, and sage and cook over medium heat, stirring often, 2 to 3 minutes.

    Add the asparagus spears and bell pepper pieces and cook for 1 minute. Add the rice and cook for 1 to 2 minutes, stirring constantly, “toasting” the rice.

  2. Add the wine and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 to 2 minutes.

  3. Stir in 2 cups simmering stock and the green beans.

    Reduce the heat so that the rice/vegetable mixture remains at a low boil. Stir often. After 3 minutes, add the peas and the asparagus tips, and 2 more cups of stock.

  4. Continue cooking for 10 to 11 minutes, stirring frequently and adding more liquid in 1⁄4 cup batches as necessary.

    Taste a grain of rice; it should be tender but firm. The mixture should have movement but no excess liquid. If the rice requires more cooking, add a touch more liquid and cook for another 1 to 2 minutes.

  5. Remove from heat.

    Stir in the tomato, zucchini, basil, parsley, and Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper, if necessary. Serve immediately.