Roasted Red Pepper and Asparagus Risotto

This meal was inspired while I was up in the mountains skiing with my family. After a long day out on the mountain, my family would come home with huge appetites craving heartier meals. The problem with creating a heavier dish though, was that my parents had become vegetarian for lent and my dad is gluten free... see not so easy now... plus there are only so many times you can eat beans and straight veggies without getting bored or left hungry. As such, I found it fitting to whip up the most comforting, filling dish... roasted red pepper and asparagus risotto. Yummy... Even just the name risotto sounds comforting... and that is just what this dish is. It is filling, and creamy and feels like home. 

 
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Now I know I mentioned previously C's amazing risotto... but this is not that one. That one will come later but for now, rest assured this one is equally delicious.

 
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What You'll Need

8 cups Chicken Broth, Low-Sodium

3 Tbsp Olive Oil

1/2 Medium Onion, Diced

2 Red Bell Peppers, Roasted (recipe below)

4 Stalks of Asparagus, Roasted (recipe below)

1- 3/4 cup Arborio Rice

3/4 Cups Dry White Wine

1 Cup Grated Parmesan

Zest of 1/2 a Lemon

Squeeze of 1/2 of a Lemon

Salt and Pepper

Directions

For the Roasted Red Bell Peppers and Asparagus

1. Preheat the broiler on you oven

2. Prep the bell peppers by removing the tops, gutting them and then slicing the peppers into large strips. 

3. Lightly coat the peppers and the asparagus with olive oil (additional) and place the asparagus skin side up on a metal baking pan and place in the oven, cooking for 5 minutes, then add the asparagus and continue cooking another 5 minutes until the asparagus is roasted and the peppers skins are blackened and blistered. 

4. Remove the veggies using tongs, and let cool for a few minutes. Chop the asparagus and set aside. Using a small knife carefully peel off the skins of the red peppers then dice. 

 

For the Risotto

1.  Bring the chicken broth to a rolling boil

2.  In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium to medium low heat and add the diced onions, stirring occasionally for about 2-3 minutes or until they are translucent. 

3. Add the asparagus and peppers and season with salt. 

4. Add the arborio rice and stir to incorporate all the ingredients, coating the rice with olive oil, cooking for about a minute or two.

5. Add in the white wine and let cook for about a minute or two. 

6. Begin adding in the chicken broth, in order to make creamy and thick risotto you want to slowly incorporate the chicken broth stirring softly but continuously and only adding more when the rice has absorbed the liquid. Start by adding about a cup to a cup and a half of the warm chicken broth (so that the rice is covered slightly) and begin to stir. After the liquid is absorbed repeat the process adding about a cup at a time. Continue adding the broth until the rice is cooked and has a creamy texture (about 25-30 min). Note, you may not use all of the chicken broth. 

7. Once it is done cooking, add a little bit more liquid to prevent sticking and add in the cheese stirring to incorporate.

8. Squeeze with lemon, add the zest and season lightly with pepper. 

Serve hot and enjoy!