Start with dry Arborio rice, end with a creamy side dish that will steal the dinner show. Sorry, entree!
In a 3-quart saucepan, cook onion and garlic in hot oil over medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes or until onion is tender, stirring occasionally. Add the rice and cook for 3 to 5 minutes or until rice is golden brown, stirring frequently.
Meanwhile, in a 1 1/2-quart saucepan, bring broth to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and keep broth simmering. Carefully stir 1/2 cup of the broth into the rice mixture. Cook over medium heat until liquid is absorbed, stirring frequently. Continue adding broth, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring frequently until the broth has been absorbed. Rice should be tender and creamy (should take 20 to 25 minutes).
Stir in cheese; heat through. If desired, sprinkle with lemon peel. Serve immediately.
Add 1 cup chopped asparagus and 1 teaspoon finely shredded lemon peel to the risotto after half of the chicken broth has been stirred into the risotto.