I’m not one for seconds, trying to vigilantly practice portion control blahblahblah, but I could NOT resist just a wee bit more of this of this dreamy-creamy, cheesy-salty, butternut-sweet risotto. Make some for yourself and see if you can resist; especially if you have butternut squash left from last summer like I do. (Be watching for more butternut recipes to come!) The original recipe just sounded so yummy, I had to try it. So glad I did!
Do not be afraid of the word “risotto.” So not hard to do. Really.
- 1 small-medium butternut squash, peeled, cleaned, cubed and roasted
- 1 quart chicken stock (use vegetable stock for a yummy vegetarian version!)
- 1 cup water
- 2 TBSP olive oil, plus additional for roasting squash
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 cups arborio rice (regular rice won’t get you the creaminess)
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 1 TBSP fresh sage, finely chopped
- 2 TBSP butter, room temp or cut into little pieces
- 1 cup grated parmesan cheese
- salt and pepper to taste
- grated nutmeg to taste (Optional–I totally forgot to add it in and the risotto was yummy anyway! I really like nutmeg, though, so I’ll use it next time and probably stir some into the left overs.)
Preheat oven to 400F. Clean and cut the squash into 1/2-inch cubes. Place in a roasting pan, drizzle with a TBSP or two of olive oil. Add salt and pepper to taste, toss and roast for 30 minutes or until tender. Set aside.
Place chicken broth and water in a medium pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to hold at a simmer.
In a large skillet, heat 2 TBSP olive oil over medium-high heat until it starts to shimmer or ripple. Add onion and garlic. Saute until transparent, 2-3 minutes.
Add rice and saute another 2-3 minutes.
Add wine; cook, stirring occasionally until wine has been absorbed, another 2-3 minutes. (Seeing a pattern here?!)
Add 2 ladles of chicken broth, cook stirring occasionally until broth is absorbed, about 2-3 minutes. Repeat, 2 ladles-fulls at a time, until all broth from the pot is absorbed. This slow addition of liquid and the stirring is what develops the starchy creaminess of the risotto. Total cooking time will be around 18 minutes.
Add the squash in with the last 2 ladles of chicken broth.
When last of the broth is absorbed, add butter, cheese,sage, nutmeg, salt and pepper.
Stir to combine.
Ta-Da! You made risotto! Serve it up as a side dish to pork or poultry, or let it be a yummy meat-free main course like I did. I think rosemary would be a yummy substitute for the sage. If you don’t have fresh of either herb, use dried, but only half as much–dried herbs are much more potent!
I absolutely love-love-loved the combination of flavors and the overall texture of this dish. Not Michael’s favorite since it is not Mexican food and does not contain meat, but he thought it was pretty good and thought he’d be good with having it again sometime. A very good thing, since there are quite a few squash still lurking in the cellar…