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Risotto with Lemony Asparagus

- 2 tbsp (30 ml) olive oil
- 1 shallot, chopped
- 1/2 cup (120 ml) arborio rice
- 1 1/2 cups (360 ml) hot vegetable stock
- 1 tbsp (15 ml) fresh parsley, chopped
- zest of 1/2 lemon (approx. 1 tsp or 5 ml)
- 1/4 tsp (1 ml) salt
- freshly ground pepper
- 1 sprig fresh thyme
- 6 stalks asparagus, woody ends removed and cut into 2" (5 cm) pieces

In a sauce pan, sauté the shallot in the olive oil until softened. Add the rice and mix well.

Add 1/2 cup (120 ml) of the hot vegetable stock, parsley, lemon zest, salt, pepper, and thyme. Stir the combination until it has thickened and then add another 1/2 cup (120 ml) of the stock. Continue in this fashion until all of the stock has been absorbed by the rice.

Meanwhile cook the asparagus in simmering water until just tender (about 5 minutes - depending on thickness.) Drain.

Remove the thyme sprig, add the asparagus, and serve immediately.

Serves 2.