Cheesy, creamy, with generous amounts of fresh plump asparagus slices. The pink-ish bits are not ham, but instead sweet red onion, which added enough flavor to not need spices. I used Galaxy Nutritional Foods mozzarella rice shreds to thicken the sauce and it worked out great. Not sure how 'regular' dairy mozzarella would behave (clump?) so I would suggest grated Parmesan.
-large saucepan with tall sides
Quick and simple
1 medium red onion
6-8 fresh asparagus stalks
1/2 c. Aborio rice
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 14 oz can of Swanson Natural Goodness Chicken Broth (or GF vegetable broth)
1/4 c. Parmesan cheese -OR- Galaxy Nutritional Foods mozzarella rice shreds.. lactose free
1. Chop up red onion into small-ish pieces (not diced). Also wash and slice asparagus into 1/2 inch pieces. Place onion into large saucepan, but set asparagus pieces aside next to range.
2. Add Aborio rice in with onion, then pour olive oil over rice/onion and mix well. Turn on heat to medium-high and begin cooking rice, stirring constantly. Cook rice and onion for 1-2 minutes, just until the rice is mostly translucent with a spot of white still in each grain (might begin to toast a little).
3. Add a fourth of the broth to the saucepan over the rice; turn the heat down to medium. Continue stirring broth for about 2 minutes, or until the rice soaks up most of the liquid.
4. Add the sliced asparagus and more broth to the saucepan; use enough broth so that the asparagus is covered. Let the rice/asparagus/broth bubble and cook, stirring occasionally. Add in a little more broth when necessary, but save a good 1/4th cup for the end. The asparagus will need to cook for around 10 minutes. Taste to make sure the asparagus and rice are tender.
5. On your last addition or broth, quickly pour in the cheese and stir well-- the broth should begin to thicken. Break up any cheese clumps and continue stirring constantly, over the heat, until the broth is mostly absorbed and cheese has melted.
6. Remove from burner and let cook for 2 minutes, while the cheese sauce thickens a little more. Serve warm.