|Butternut Squash and Blue Cheese Risotto|
We have made several different Butternut Squash Risotto including one that doesn't even have Rice but Barley. It is very versatile and combines well with things like Leek or Chestnut. So this is just a subtle variation but one that has a marriage of flavours that is surprising and striking. We placed slices of Salt Spring Blue Cheese on top but you could easily crumble it in for better distribution. Let it melt a little before mixing in at the table. So lovely!
Butternut Squash and Blue Cheese Risotto
2-3 cups diced Butternut Squash, 1 cm cubed
I am purposely ball parking the filler because you should play around with it as much as you like. D is conservative with the veg so the beginning of the range is his measurements.1c (1/2 c Arborio rice per person)
1.5-2 l stock, using dried, all natural, no sodium veggie stock
Now this is legitmately a ballpark. You may need more or less depending on your rice or how hard you like the rice. I like it softer.
3 sprigs of fresh Thyme on the sprig so you can lift it out
1 large Shallot, minced
1c Dry White Wine (try for no or light on the oak)
3-4 T Butter!
1-2 T Blue Cheese per serving
1/3 c fresh Parmesan, grated
1 t minced fresh Rosemary Parsley, for serving (fresh only, leave off if you don't have fresh or substitute Parsley)
In a large fry pan fry the Squash in half the Butter until just tender and set aside (~8-10 minutes) trick is to use a large pan so the veg is not crowded and is mostly in 1 layer.
In the same pan add some olive oil and butter, about 1 T each. Add the shallot and saute for about a minute until just softened. Add the Rice and the thyme. Stir until all the rice is coated and shimmering and slightly toasted.
Add a ladle of stock and stir, stir, stir with a wooden spoon until it is almost completely absorbed. I.e. you should be able to draw a mote down the pan with your spoon and it will not close back up immediately. Add another and another until it's all done the same way. It'll be about half an hour at least. Taste it to see if it is the texture you like. When you're one ladle away, turn the heat off, add about 1/2 cup of freshly grated Parmesan.add the ladle add the veg back and cover for a few minutes (this last bit is optional). Add 1 last pat of Butter to finish. Salt and pepper to taste. You may not need any Salt depending on your Broth.
Serve with a few Tablespoon sized servings of Blue Cheese and the minced Rosemary. I insist you use fresh Rosemary or nothing. Dried Rosemary will not work here. Use Parsley otherwise.
Serve warm with a nice Cabernet Sauvignon.