Risotto Verde

1 large Imperial, Vidalia or other sweet onion, peeled and chopped (about 2-1/2 cups)
2 cloves garlic, crushed through a press
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 cup arborio rice, dry
1 cup frozen chopped spinach
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup dry white table wine, such as chardonnay
2 (14.5-ounce) cans vegetable broth, heated
6 spears of fresh asparagus, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh tarragon leaves or fresh basil leaves
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

In a large saucepan, melt the butter and olive oil together over medium heat. Add the onions and garlic and cook for 5 to 7 minutes, or until onions are transparent and soft. Stir in the arborio rice, spinach and salt; cook for 1 minute. Stir in the wine and bring to a boil.

Cook, stirring frequently, until the wine is absorbed into the rice. Stir in the vegetable broth, one-half cup at a time, allowing the broth to be absorbed before adding more broth. Adjust the heat so that the broth simmers but doesn’t boil away.

When adding the last half-cup of broth, stir in the asparagus spears and cook until the broth has been absorbed and the asparagus is tender.

Stir in the tarragon or basil leaves and Parmesan cheese. Turn off heat and allow to stand 5 minutes or until ready to serve. Rice should be creamy and moist, not dry, when serving. If the rice stands too long, stir in a little milk to moisten.

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