I confess. I used to hate asparagus. Loathed it. I would see pictures of it artfully arranged and think “doesn’t matter how you plate it, it still tastes horrible.” But as part of cooking, I make myself try new things. I don’t give up on a food. Seriously. This was the fifth way of preparing asparagus I tried. I loved it. I slowly started to appreciate the taste of asparagus. And now I’m finding I’m liking it in a wider variety of dishes.
I got this recipe from the owner of a small farmer’s market about 20 miles outside of Charleston, South Carolina. It was hand-written. So I have NO IDEA if it was her own creation or if it was headline news in a cooking magazine. I did a quick internet search and couldn’t find a recipe that matched, so I’m hoping I’m not stealing the recipe from Julia Child or something.
This recipe is DELICIOUS. It is also, honestly, a bit time-consuming to make. Not hard by any means- because you’re purposely cooking the risotto to the point it clumps, so no trying to make the “perfect risotto”- but it does take a bit of time. But it is worth it.
There are a LOT of step-by-step pictures below, so it might take a minute to load!
Here is the “fun” part.
Add rice & stir 2 minutes.
Add 1 cup stock. Simmer hard, stirring, until liquid is reduced by half to three-quarters and mixture thickens.
Add rest of stock 1/2 to 1 C. at a time, stirring constantly.
Cook until rice is cooked through and begins to clump (past the point you would normally cook risotto).
Asparagus Risotto Cakes
- Mise en place (always!).
- Steam asparagus over boiling water for 5 minutes. Rinse in cold water and chop. (Discard tough ends).
- Heat olive oil in large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion. Cook 1-2 minutes, until translucent. Add garlic. Cook 1 minute.
- Add rice and stir 2 minutes.
- Add 1 cup stock. Simmer hard, stirring, until liquid is reduced by half to three-quarters and mixture thickens. Add rest of stock 1/2-1 cup at a time, stirring constantly. Cook until rice is cooked through and begins to clump (past the point you would normally cook risotto).
- Remove from heat. Add butter, cheese, lemon juice, chopped asparagus, salt, & pepper. Stir until cheese melted.
- Spread mixture on baking sheet. Allow cool.
- Form into approximately 12 patties. Cover with breadcrumbs. Heat griddle to 250°. Cook until well-browned, turning 1-2 times while cooking.