What I chose to make as a side dish was Roasted Asparagus and Lemon Zest Risotto. I roasted off the asparagus first by placing them on a parchment covered cookie sheet and sprinkling some olive oil, salt and pepper on them and cooking them at 425 deg for about 15 minutes until they were just turning brown. Like other roasted veggies, this technique really amplifies the flavor. The main course was grilled chicken breast paillards seasoned with salt and lemon pepper. I served dinner with a great Chardonnay called Robert Mondavi Private Selection 2006. It was one of those impromtu dinners that turned out great.
I don't really follow a recipe for the risotto but I will try to write down the approximated proportions I used as follows:
Roasted Asparagus and Lemon Zest Risotto
1 cup Arborio rice
1 quart of low sodium, low fat chicken broth
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1/4 cup dry white wine
2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup finely chopped onions
2 Tbsp butter
3/4 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
2 Tbsp. lemon zest
1 bunch of roasted asparagus, cut into bite size pieces
Salt and pepper to taste.
Heat up chicken broth in a separate pan. In a medium saucepan over medium high heat, heat olive oil. Add onions and saute until translucent. Add white wine and lemon juice and cook for 1-2 minutes until almost evaporated. Add rice and stir in around in onion mixture until rice starts to look translucent, approx. 2 minutes. Add 1/2 cup of chicken broth and stir rice occasionally until broth is nearly evaporated. Keep adding chicken broth in 1/2 cup intervals until rice is tender and creamy. It is important to taste test rice toward the end to make sure it is thoroughly cooked through. Add butter, Parmesan cheese, lemon zest and asparagus and heat through. Season with salt and pepper to taste.