Recipe of the Week – 10th March 2014 – Mushroom and Leek Risotto with Asparagus

I really enjoyed making this risotto at the cafe last week – there is definitely something therapeutic about having to stand and stir this for 25 minutes (if you’ve got the time, which I rarely have nowadays!). There are less traditional risotto recipes available which require less maintenance, but I have found that this is worth the little extra effort!

Serves 4


500g chestnut mushrooms, quartered
2 medium sized leeks, trimmed and sliced
Small bunch of asparagus spears, trimmed
2 tbs olive oil
1 knob butter
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
300g risotto rice, such as arborio
500ml vegetable stock from bouillon
Small handful parsley leaves, chopped
50g vegetarian parmesan freshly grated
Salt and pepper to taste


1. Heat the oil and the butter in a deep frying pan over a medium flame the add the leek slices and garlic, and then fry for 5 minutes until soft. Stir in the mushrooms, season with salt and pepper and cook gently for 10 minutes until all the vegetables are soft.

2. Add the rice and stir for 1 minute, ensuring all the grains are coated, then add the stock a little at a time, stirring continually until all is absorbed. Cook gently for 20-25 minutes, stirring regularly.

3. Meanwhile, place the asparagus spears in a large steamer over a pan of boiling water and steam for 5 minutes, until tender.

4. When the risotto is cooked, take off the heat and stir in half the grated cheese and the parsley.

5. Serve immediately topped with the asparagus spears and the remaining Parmesan sprinkled on top.


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