Spring Vegetable Lemon Risotto
Spring Vegetable Lemon Risotto is creamy risotto with leeks, fava beans, asparagus, plenty of lemon flavor, and parmesan cheese. It’s a delicious way to celebrate spring!
I’m eating so much asparagus that I may just turn green myself. I finish a bunch, and I’m right back at the store buying another…I just can’t get enough! Who’s with me? Please tell me that I won’t be the only one that turns green…I could certainly use company. 🙂
Because of my obsession (problem?), I’m finding more and more ways to use asparagus besides roasting it and eating the whole pan. This Spring Vegetable Lemon Risotto was one delicious way to utilize my asparagus, along with two of my other faves — leeks and fava beans.
Fava beans are definitely another one of my spring pleasures, which is no surprise if you’ve seen saw my posts on How To Cook Fava Beans and my Fava Bean, Burrata, and Mint Crostini. I love them so much that I decided to grow them in my winter garden, and on Easter, I discovered the first few that were ready for picking. I was so excited that I posted it on Instagram, which you can view here.
Fava beans are time consuming things as you have to shell them all, but you can do this in advance and have them waiting in the fridge to toss into pastas, risottos, or for purees. Bob’s Red Mill sells dried fava beans also, or you can just swap them out with something else if you’re strapped for time.
Normally when I see risotto on the menu at a restaurant, I’m tempted to order it. It could be short rib risotto or vegetarian like this, and I’ll be happy either way. It’s something I plan to make at home more often, which is why this is the second risotto recipe you’re seeing here in less than a month.
Let’s just call it making up for lost time. 🙂
I chose to go meatless this time around because of the beautiful spring produce, and the best thing about risotto is that it’s completely customizable with whatever you have on hand. Mushrooms, peas, and spinach would also be wonderful additions, and the list goes on. And if you’d like to make it heartier for the meat eaters in your life, serve it with grilled chicken or fish.
I also added plenty of lemon zest and juice to give this a nice pop of citrus flavor, and what’s risotto without a generous amount of freshly grated parmesan? And I mean generous.
This Spring Vegetable Lemon Risotto is an easy, meatless meal that’s bursting with spring veggies and lemon flavor. Let’s just consider this spring comfort food, shall we?
And now, it’s Eat Seasonal time! Thanks to Becky from The Vintage Mixer for organizing another month of Eat Seasonal, where a group of bloggers link up delicious seasonal recipes. This month I was able to incorporate 2 different types of produce into my dish from the list we were given — asparagus and fava beans.
Please don’t forget to visit the other delicious dishes from the Eat Seasonal bloggers, as well as Becky’s April Seasonal Produce Guide for even more inspiration. You can also tag your own seasonal dishes with the hashtag #eatseasonal as well to join in on the fun!
Asparagus and Baked Ricotta Tart by Vintage Mixer
Papaya-Lime Smoothie Bowl with Toasted Cashew-Quinoa Cereal by Floating Kitchen
Vietnamese Lemongrass Chicken Rice Noodle Bowls: Bun Ga Nuong by Food For My Family
Rhubarb Ginger-Berry Bourbon Cooler by Climbing Grier Mountain
Marinated Beets with White Wine Vinegar by Project Domestication
Shallot and Red Wine Jam by Letty’s Kitchen
Lemon Rosemary Shrimp and Broccoli Slaw by Cookin’ Canuck
Key Lime Pie by Foodie Crush
- 4 cups low sodium chicken or vegetable stock
- 1 cup water
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 1 bunch asparagus, trimmed and sliced on the bias into 1" pieces
- 1 large leek, light green and white parts, halved and sliced thinly into half moons
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1½ cups arborio rice
- ½ cup dry white wine
- 1 lb. fava beans, shelled and cooked (see recipe link in notes) or substitute with 1 cup thawed frozen peas
- zest of 1 lemon
- juice of 1 lemon
- ⅓ cup freshly grated parmesan plus more for serving
- salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- Place the stock and water in a sauce pan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat and continue to simmer.
- Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. Add the asparagus and saute until crisp tender, about 3 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside.*
- Add the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add the leek and saute 2-3 minutes until softened. Add the garlic and saute for 30 seconds longer. Add the arborio rice and toast in the pan, stirring constantly for 1 minute.
- Add the white wine to the pan and bring to a boil. Cook the wine until it has reduced by half, about 2 minutes, then add 1 cup of the warm stock mixture. Stir the risotto occasionally, and repeat adding another cup of the stock mixture when the liquid has almost been absorbed. When the last cup of stock as almost been absorbed, stir in the asparagus and fava beans or peas to heat through. Once the liquid has been absorbed and the risotto is tender, remove from heat and add the lemon zest, juice, parmesan cheese and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Serve immediately and enjoy!
Fava beans may be cooked in advance following my recipe How To Cook Fava Beans.
Prep time includes about 15 minutes to shell and cook fava beans, so if you substitute the fava beans with peas, prep time is only about 5 minutes.