- 1 bunch asparagus, ends trimmed
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 cup sliced cremini mushrooms
- 1 shallot, minced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 2 cups half and half
- 2 cups cooked white rice
- 2 cups grated sharp white cheddar cheese
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Turn the broiler to high. Grease an 8-inch baking dish with non-stick oil spray.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Fill a large bowl with ice water.
When the water is boiling, add half of the asparagus and cook until the asparagus is tender, 3 to 5 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to the prepared ice water and repeat with remaining asparagus. When all of the asparagus is cooked, remove from the ice bath, pat dry and cut into 3/4-inch pieces.
Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the mushrooms and cook, stirring frequently, until softened, 5 to 7 minutes. Add the shallot and garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until aromatic, about 1 minute. Add the flour and cook, stirring, until its raw flavor is cooked out, about 3 minutes.
Add the half and half, bring to a simmer, and cook, stirring, until the mixture has thickened, 5 to 7 minutes. Add the rice and asparagus and cook, stirring, just until heated through, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in 1 cup of the cheese until it melts. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Transfer to the prepared baking dish and top with the remaining cheese. Broil until the cheese is melted and golden brown, about 5 minutes. Remove from the oven and serve hot.