I love risotto but have been intimidated to make it for awhile. The last good risotto, was the best I’d ever had. It was made by my husband’s aunt in Italy when we were visiting and it was perfect. She made it with porcini’s and it was divine. I was going to attempt making this but never got the guts to do so, so I put it off. I have had risotto since then but it hasn’t been good so I figured I needed to attempt my own. I was planning on making butternut squash ravioli but I ordered them at a restaurant a few days before, so I figured a risotto would be perfect. I couldn’t find a recipe I liked so once again I created my own.
6 cups of vegetable stock (I used homemade) or chicken stock
1 ½ tbs of butter or butter substitute
2 cups of aborio rice
3 cups of butternut squash (peeled, seeded, cut into ½ chunks and roasted
2 tsp of nutmeg
Salt to taste
2 tbs of fresh sage
First Peel and seed your butternut squash. You can either roast it in halves like this or cut it into chunks and then roast it. I was going to cook the squash in the risotto, but I changed my mind so mine was cubed and then roasted, just plain no evoo or s&p.
Begin the risotto by heating your vegetable broth. Once it is warm put the butter in a large pan. When the butter is melted stir in the rice, make sure the rice is completely coated and brown for a minute, while stirring. Ladle in ½ cup of veg stock and stir until it is absorbed by the rice. Repeat ½ cup at a time until the rice is cooked and creamy, about 40-45 minutes.
Add the nutmeg and salt to the rice and stir. Next add the butternut squash to the pan and mix together. You can either stir the sage in at this point or use the sage as garnish. I stirred it in because I Iike the flavor.
It was not as good as the mushroom risotto in Italy, but my aunt has been making that for years, so I could never expect to outshine her on my first attempt, but it was good. The nutmeg and roasted butternut squash gave it perfect sweetness and the arborio rice with the stock made it so creamy and beautiful and the sage added the perfect amount of freshness to the dish.
I did not have parmigiano reggiano cheese so I did not add any, but it would be great with this risotto. Also, by omitting the cheese and the butter this dish is vegan. For you meat-eaters out there feel free to use a chicken stock with this because butternut squash pairs wonderfully with chicken stock.