After the meal was cooked and dinner was eaten, I found myself asking two questions:
1) Why have I never made risotto before?
2) How many hours until I can eat it again for tomorrow's lunch?
Friends, I almost didn't wake up from the food coma this delicious risotto swept me into. The recipe, courtesy of Clean Eating Magazine, is surely a keeper. Adam even asked if we could make it in lieu of stuffing at Thanksgiving (While flattered, I respectfully declined. A girl just can't do without her favorite seasonal stuffing.).
I suppose what intimidated me about the risotto was the cooking process. You slowly add the broth over time, stirring constantly. Would I be patient enough? Could I handle the risotto-madness?
I didn't just handle it, friends. I owned it.
Another darling addition to this fall dish? Roasted butternut squash. Oh, yes. And don't forget about the toasted walnuts and freshly grated parmesan. Tastes like true autumn love to me.
A cautionary note: This is a dish that takes time, so forget your Rachael Ray speedy-pants. Just relax, take it easy, and know that your dinner is well worth the wait.
Is there a particular dish or food you've always wanted to try, but have been "afraid" to?
Butternut Squash Risotto
(recipe from Clean Eating Magazine)
This dish is delicious-ness to the extreme. I can't say anything else. I'm actually speechless.
- 1 butternut squash, peeled and diced
- a little drizzle of olive oil
- Salt and fresh ground black pepper
- 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 1 onion, diced
- 1 TBSP olive oil
- 1 TBSP fresh garlic, minced
- 1 cup arborio rice (risotto)
- 1 TBSP fresh thyme leaves (I just used a sprinkling of dried)
- 1 TBSP fresh sage, minced (again, I just used a sprinkling of dried)
- 1/2 to 1 cup frozen peas
- 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup chopped walnuts, toasted
1) Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Toss squash with a just a little bit of olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Spread squash in an even layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake until tender, about 25 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. Set squash aside.
2) Meanwhile, bring broth to a simmer in a saucepan over medium heat; keep warm.
3) In a pot, heat 1 TBSP olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and garlic and saute until softened, about 3 - 4 minutes. Add rice to the pot and stir to coat with oil and onion.
4) Add 1/2 cup warm broth; simmer and stir with a wooden spoon until the liquid evaporates, about 2 minutes. Stir in another 1/2 cup of warm broth; simmer, stirring occasionally until liquid is almost evaporated. Continue adding broth in 1/2 cup increments, adding more only after the previous addition has been absorbed. Rice is done when it's tender but still slightly firm and white in the center (not chalky!). Continue adding broth until only 1/2 cup remains.
5) Add thyme, sage, peas, and cheese to the pot with the last 1/2 cup of broth; stir until cheese melts. Remove pan from heat before all the liquid has absorbed. Gently fold in cooked squash and walnuts. Season risotto with salt and pepper.