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    Recipe: It’s much easier to cook risotto in the oven, then stir in asparagus, peas, lemon, and Parmesan

    Sheryl Julian for The Boston Globe
    Oven risotto with asparagus and peas

    Serves 6

    You might love the creaminess of risotto, but not the time it takes to stir it constantly. In this streamlined method, the risotto cooks in the oven, which does the work of stirring. You need short-grain Arborio rice for the dish. Cook asparagus, cut into short lengths, briefly so they don’t lose their bright green color, then add them to the risotto when it’s finished cooking, along with frozen peas (you can also use fresh when they come into season; saute them with the asparagus), Parmesan, and lemon rind. Serve the risotto as soon as it comes out of the oven.

    4tablespoons butter
    1bunch asparagus, tough ends snapped off, spears cut diagonally into 1-inch lengths
    1shallot, finely chopped
    cups Arborio rice
    ½cup white wine
    cups chicken stock
    1cup frozen peas, thawed under cold running water
    Grated rind of 2 lemons
    ¾cup finely grated Parmesan
    Salt and pepper, to taste

    1.  Set the oven at 400 degrees.

    2. In a large flameproof casserole over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the asparagus and cook over medium-high heat for 3 minutes, or until tender but still bright green. Use a slotted spoon to remove them from the pan; set aside.


    3. Add the shallot to the pan and cook, stirring often, for 3 minutes. Add the rice and stir until it is coated with butter. Cook 3 minutes more, stirring twice.

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    4. Pour in the wine and stir until it is absorbed. 

    5. Add the stock, bring to a simmer, cover the pan, and transfer to the oven.

    6. Cook the risotto for 22 to 25 minutes, or until it is tender and has almost absorbed all the liquid in the pan (the rice will continue to absorb liquid when you remove it from the oven).

    7. Add the peas, lemon rind, Parmesan, asparagus, salt, and pepper, and stir until they are incorporated and the rice is creamy. Jill Gibson

    Jill Gibson can be reached at