Wednesday, 4 March 2009

Risotto with Butternut Squash

A lovely recipe plagiarised from my friend Federica (who is from Romanziol, near San Doná di Piave).

Ingredients (serves 2-3 hungry people)
1 medium-sized butternut squash (peeled, cleaned from seeds and diced)
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1-2 cloves of garlic, very finely chopped
Fresh parsley, finely chopped
2 cups (or glasses) of arborio rice or pudding rice*
Vegetable stock (roughly double the quantity of the rice)
Olive oil
A splash of white wine
Parmesan cheese, grated (optional)

*It may be anathema to my Italian friends, but I have been using pudding rice instead. This is for two reasons: firstly, it's a nice, thick grain rice and does a similar job. Secondly, it's infinitely cheaper and you can get it anywhere in the UK. Arborio is a bit of a middle class thing, therefore expensive, right up Nigella's alley.

Put the diced squash in a saucepan with boiling water and boil for about 30 minutes or until nicely cooked. Drain and put aside. In the meantime...

Lightly fry the garlic and onions in the olive oil until beautifully translucent (or cooked as I like to call it). Add a bit of white wine and cook for 2-3 minutes. Add the rice and give it a stir for a few seconds until it's nicely coated with the juices. Add the stock until the rice is covered, bring to the boil and then allow to simmer. Add your seasoning and keep an eye on it. When it's beginning to absorb most of the stock, check if it's sufficiently cooked. If not, add more stock until you're happy with the rice. When you think it's cooked, take it off the fire and cover it for 5 minutes, allowing the rice to absorb all the juice. Add the squash and parsley and serve it topped with parmesan cheese. If you want, you can serve it with natural set yoghurt instead, turning it from a risotto to a Turkish pilaf. Enjoy!


Bethan said...

Yummy! This is definitely one to try. We could have a Macondo Sunsets dinner party, with everyone bringing one dish from the blog!

Blackbeard said...

What an excellent idea Bethan. I will have to dock Queen Anne's Revenge in Plymouth and join all you land lubbers!

Bethan said...

Lol love the flag! I'm quite pleased with that idea myself :-)

Billy said...

I've got my bag of middle-class arborio rice sitting unused in my cupboard. Might have a go at this next chance i get.

Lexi_penitas said...

Ρε φίλε γιατί εν γράφεσαι στα Ιστομαγειρέματα να μας διάς που τζιαμέ τες ωραίες συνταγές στα ελληνικά; Αν θέλεις πεσμου να σου δώσω access

Lexi_penitas said...

Φίλε Μαυρογένη, στείλε μου ε-μαιλ στο για να μπορέσω να σε προσκαλέσω στα Ιστομαγειρέματα. Χρειάζομαι όπωσδήποτε το ε-μαιλ σου.

Νάσαι καλά!

tina blog said...

how about a fancy dress dinner party? pirate theme of course ;-)

tina blog said...

I may be excommunicated myself - an Italian - for admitting to this: I use pudding rice! arborio is for posh birds like nigella (and bilus)!

Blackbeard said...

Halloumi doesn't go stringy or melt. If you grate it at the top it will become crispy. Commercial halloumi melts a little bit, but the better the quality, the more it holds. And I have long suspected that arborio is posh, thanks Tina! I like the pirate theme idea too! Although food on pirate ships is nothing to envy!