Butternut Squash Risotto
Okay, this is probably the last post I’ll be making to clear out my old photos taken with my Canon PowerShot S400. (I want to post only better photos taken with my new 30D from now on.)
When we were visiting Dave’s mother, Barbara, she suggested that we make some butternut squash risotto, having been inspired when she saw my link to the Frankenstein’s Butternut Squash Risotto posted on Scrumptious Street a while back.
But we didn’t really have any computer access at her place, so we had to throw together our own recipe. It came out very different than I imagine Stephanie’s must have been, but also very delicious.
After we went home and made it again several days later, I knew I had to share the recipe with you.
If you are already familiar with making risotto, a few things about my recipe may jump out at you as, oh, wrong. Around here I prefer to call them different. My understanding is that in a traditional risotto, the onions are never browned, because the color would be inappropriate. But I think browned onions are tastier, the darker the better, so I do them that way. As you can see, they melted into the risotto and didn’t stand out as weird-looking anyways.
Also, most risotto recipes call for it to be finished with some sort of cheese. As Dave does not eat cheese, this step was edited out. I considered finishing it with cream instead, but the extra bit of stock at the end, along with that last bit of butter, really did the trick.
Butternut Squash Risotto
Approximately 5 C chicken stock
A splash of white wine
3 tbsp unsalted butter
1 tbsp olive oil
1/3 C finely minced onion
1 large shallot, finely minced
1 1/2 C arborio rice
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp finely minced fresh parsley
3/4 C roasted butternut squash puree
1 C butternut squash 1″ cubes, roasted
Salt and pepper to taste
Peel and seed the squash, then cut it into 1″ cubes, and roast it until it is dark and sweet. This seems to take a different amount of time every time I do it, so just check in on it once in a while and take it out when you’re happy with it. It can go a long time before it burns, so don’t worry too much. Keep 1 C of the cubes, and create 3/4 C puree.
Bring the stock to a simmer and keep it warm.
Melt 1 tbsp butter until it starts to sizzle, then add the onion and shallot and brown them nice and dark. Risotto recipes typically ask that you saute your onions until they are soft but not browned, but if you listen to me and brown them, you’ll add great depth of flavor. They end up melting into the risotto and don’t even stand out unappealingly, as you can see from the photo.
Once they are browned, add another 1 tbsp butter and 1 tbsp oil, along with some salt and black pepper to taste. When the butter has melted, add the rice, and stir to coat.
Add a splash of white wine and stir until it is absorbed.
Start adding the stock a ladleful at a time, stirring after each ladleful until it is absorbed before adding more. Once the rice reaches a texture you like (yes, taste it as you go!), turn off the heat. Stir in the squash, lemon juice, and parsley, then add another small ladleful of the stock. Finish the risotto by stirring in that last 1 tbsp butter.