It is a pity that all this time I didn’t really put a risotto recipe, because it is one of my specialties – or so I’ve been told! I make risotto very often and mostly in different versions; with meat, variable vegetables, salmon etc. I came to realize I really enjoying making it, so one day I said I am going to try it with the squash. And it turned out pretty good! I used Italian risotto rice with dried vegetables, so I followed the classic procedure without dealing with a lot of chopping of cutting.
The magic ingredients for the perfect risotto are the butter and the Parmesan (love the combo) and the best trick is at the end when you let the risotto rest. It is then when its texture becomes creamy and juicy with the help of the butter and the sticky cheese. Be careful with the salt though because you have the stock which is already salty and the Parmesan at the end. And it is always better to have less salt in the food than more!
1 large onion
2 cloves garlic
400gr butternut squash
400gr risotto rice
2 wineglasses dry white wine
1 liter vegetable stock
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp olive oil
freshly ground black pepper
100gr Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
a handful of arugula salad
Boil one liter of water and add the vegetable stock in. Stir and set aside.
Cut the butternut squash in half and peel its skin. If you have a big one, use only the half, otherwise use it all. Take out all the seeds and cut it in 1cm pieces. Wash it good and set aside. Chop the onion and the garlic finely.
Heat the olive oil and 1 tbsp of butter on a medium pan. Fry the onion, the garlic and the squash slowly for about 15 minutes. When they have softened add the rice and turn on the heat. Stir well while the rice is frying. Fry it in high heat for about 1 minute.
Add the wine and let all the flavors do their job. After it has evaporated, add your first spoonful of stock and keep stirring. Add some salt and turn down the heat so the rice will not cook too fast from the outside. Keep adding spoonfuls of stock and stirring the rice. The trick here is to add every new spoonful only when the previous has been absorbed. Do this for about 15 minutes. Taste the rice. If it is not cooked yet, add more stock. If your stock is over add boiling water.
Remove the rice from the heat when it is soft but also slightly firm. Add the rest of the butter – more salt if needed – and the Parmesan. Add the salad and season with pepper. Stir good and cover the pan with a lid. Let it sit for 2 minutes. This will make it even creamier and juicier!