As a person that loves to cook locally and seasonally I get very excited this time of year when the seasons starts to change and my ingredients start to become fresher and lighter. After making my first shad roe sighting at the P Street Whole Foods, I know spring is definitely on its way. In order to celebrate I made a delicious risotto. I use zucchini and peas in this recipe but you can easily switch around the ingredients to what you can find at your local farmers market: asparagus, ramps, or fava beans would all be delicious.
2 cans (14.5 ounces each) reduced-sodium chicken broth
3 tablespoons butter
1 to 2 large zucchini (1 pound), cut into ½-inch cubes
Coarse salt and fresh ground pepper
½ cup finely chopped onion
1 ½ cup Arborio rice
½ cup dry white wine
1 cup frozen peas, thawed
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for garnish
1. Heat the broth and 2 ½ cups water in a saucepan over low heat; keep warm. Meanwhile, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a 3-quart saucepan over medium heat. Add the zucchini; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring often, until the zucchini is golden, 8 to 10 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer the zucchini to a plate.
2. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Add the onion; cook until soft, 5 minutes. Season with 1 teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Raise the heat to medium. Add the rice; cook, stirring, about 3 minutes. Add the wine; cook until absorbed, about 2 minutes.
3. Cook the rice, adding 1 cup hot broth at a time (stir until almost all the liquid is absorbed before adding more), until tender, 25 to 30 minutes total.
4. Add the zucchini and peas; cook until the peas are bright green, 2 minutes. Remove from the heat. Stir in the remaining tablespoon butter and the Parmesan. Serve, topped with more cheese.
Adapted from Everyday Food’s Great Food Fast.