Have you tried any of these recipes?

Have you tried any of these recipes? If you have, please leave a comment to let me know how it worked for you and if you suggest any changes!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Spring Mascarpone Risotto a la Salish Lodge in Snoqualmie, Washington

Who doesn't like risotto?  And what better way to celebrate the early days of spring than with a risotto containing all of springs heartily-missed delights?  I recently had a wonderful risotto while on vacation and staying at Salish Lodge in Snoqualmie, Washington.

Tally-ho!  It's Spring!
Asparagus Risotto
ANY time of day


  • Shallot (1 small, chopped)
  • Garlic (2 cloves, chopped)
  • Olive Oil, 1 1/2 Tbsp
  • Butter, 1 1/2 Tbsp
  • Risotto, 1 1/2 cups
  • Dry White Wine, 2/3 cup
  • 4 -5 cups broth (chicken or mushroom, I used both)
  • Asparagus, approx 1 lb
  • One bunch of ramps
  • One handful of frozen peas
  • 1 Tbsp lemon zest
  • 1/2 cup mascarpone cheese
  • 1 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • lemon juice from two lemons
  • 1 egg white
  • salt
  • black pepper

  1. Heat a large sauteing pan or wok with medium heat and add olive oil and butter.  Add the shallot and garlic and sauté until aromatic.  Add the rice and stir to cover in the mixture.
  2. Add the wine to the pan and stir until the rice has absorbed the wine.
  3. Begin to add the broth, one ladle at a time and stir until the broth is absorbed.  This will take about half an hour.
  4. In the meanwhile, blanch the asparagus and the ramps in salted water and set aside (chop them to the size that appeals to you).
  5. After about 20 minutes of adding and stirring broth to the rice mixture, throw in the asparagus, ramps and frozen peas.  Continue stirring and adding broth.  Add the lemon zest.
  6. When all of the broth has been added and absorbed, turn off the heat and add the cheeses and stir well.
  7. Let the risotto sit a few minutes before serving.  At this time, add the lemon juice, egg white and a couple of ice cubes to a drink shaker and shake until the mixture is frothy and light.
  8. To serve, spoon the risotto in small bowls, top with a bit of the foamy lemon juice mixture and garnish with freshly grated black pepper.
 The original at Salish Lodge

A view of Snoqualmie Falls.  It is nice to have something this gorgeous to look at while you're enjoying your asparagus risotto.

Under-the-weather Eating

So, I have a bit of a neck injury and haven't been able to do much cooking since November.  So, sometimes "cooking" is more a mix of heating things up and throwing things together.  Here are a few tips I've learned this winter when I couldn't do much more than that:

1.  Fried rice is so easy to make at home.  White rice keeps for ages in the fridge and you can cook up a fresh batch of fried rice in minutes if you have cooked white rice on hand.  A bit of soy sauce, some broth, a dash of hot sauce that came with Thai take-out that you threw in the door of your fridge, several eggs, and whatever vegetables you have on hand.

2.  Pan-frying fish is quick and easy and super tasty if you coat it first in eggs, and then in flour..... but add something like curry powder to the rice you're going to use to coat the fish for added flavor.

3.  Chicken soup actually IS good for the soul.  And the neck.  The crock-pot chicken soup recipe from the Winter 2010 volume of Cook's Illustrated is FABULOUS.  You should absolutely wrap the white meat in foil if you are going to cook it in a crock pot to keep it moist and cooking well on the bone.  If you can get someone else to make it for you.... even better!
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