Bring the stock to the boil in a large saucepan. Add the asparagus and cook for 3 minutes until
just tender. Strain, reserving the stock, and refresh the asparagus under cold running water. Drain
and set aside. Return the stock to the saucepan and keep simmering gently over a low heat while you
are cooking the risotto.
Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy-based saucepan. Add the onion and cook over a medium heat,
stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes until softened. Add the garlic and cook for a further 30
seconds. Reduce the heat, add the rice and mix to coat in oil. Cook, stirring constantly, for 2-3
minutes, or until the grains are translucent.
Gradually add the hot stock, a ladleful at a time. Stir constantly and add more liquid as the
rice absorbs each addition. Increase the heat to medium so that the liquid bubbles. Cook for 20
minutes, until all the liquid is absorbed and the rice is creamy. Add the prawns and asparagus when
you add the last ladleful of stock.
Remove the saucepan from the heat, stir in the olive paste and basil and season with salt and
pepper. Spoon the risotto onto warmed plates and serve immediately, garnished with Parmesan cheese
and basil sprigs.