My new recipe for the week is butternut squash risotto. If you enjoy the comfort of a good risotto and the slight sweetness of butternut squash, then this is a classic fall recipe for you. The squash is cooked with the rice, allowing it to soften and integrate into the creamy goodness of the dish. I made it this week and C.P. said it was his new favorite! Yes, he has a lot of favorites, but I knew this one would become an instant hit in our house! The key to a good risotto is definitely patience! Adding the hot stock slowly will take some time, but the results are definitely worth it. Also, be sure to use Arborio rice. It is an Italian short-grain rice named after the town of Arborio in the Po Valley where it is grown. When cooked, the rounded rice grains are firm, creamy and chewy due to the high starch content, and this gives risotto it characteristic texture. Arborio rice is also used commonly for rice pudding.
Butternut Squash Risotto
- 1 tbls butter
- 1 1/2 pound butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 1/2 inch chunks
- Salt and Pepper
- 1 cup Arborio rice
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- 2 cans (14 oz) reduced sodium chicken broth
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/3 cup parmesan cheese
In a medium sauce pan heat chicken broth and 1/2 cup water to a boil, keep over med-low heat to insure broth mixture remains hot. In a large pot melt butter over medium heat, then add butternut squash, and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring often, until edges begin to soften, 6-8 minutes. Add rice and stir to coat. Add white wine and stir until almost all liquid has evaporated. Reduce heat to medium-low and add 1/2 cup hot broth mixture. Cook, stirring continually until almost all of the liquid is absorbed. Continuing adding hot broth, 1/2 cup at a time, and cooking until liquid is absorbed each time before adding more broth. This will take about 30-40 minutes. Once all of the broth has been added and absorbed, stir in parmesan cheese. Serve immediately, garnished with additional parmesan cheese.