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Early Spring Risotto with Shrimp and Asparagus

Serves 4

Ingredients

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 tablespoons mascarpone cheese
3/4 pound asparagus, stems peeled, chopped, and blanched, tips set aside
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
1 T olive oil
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 cup English peas
1 leek, well washed and chopped
1 cup Arborio rice
1/2 cup white wine
5 pouches Savory Choice Chicken Broth Concentrate
5 cups water
16 large shrimp, cleaned, deveined and cut in 1/2
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Preparation

Place the butter and mascarpone, the asparagus stems and the basil in a food processor fitted with a steel blade and purée. Set aside.

Place a large, straight-sided, non reactive stainless steel, nonstick saucepan over medium-high heat and, when it is hot, add the remaining 1 tablespoon butter. Add the garlic and leek and cook until they are transparent and soft, about 7 to 10 minutes. Add the rice and stir until it is well coated.

Add the wine and cook until it has been absorbed. Add the Savory Creations Chicken Broth Concentrate Sticks and 4 cups water, 1 cup at a time, stirring with each addition, until all the liquid has been absorbed, about 10 minutes. Add the asparagus tips, shrimp, peas and remaining cup water and cook until all the liquid has been absorbed.

Add the asparagus butter/mascarpone, Parmesan cheese and pepper, stirring well after each addition, and cook for 1 to 2 minutes. Divide the risotto among 4 shallow bowls and serve immediately.