Monday, November 25, 2013

November Risotto

This month our risotto is: pumpkin and pea! I mentioned last month that butternut squash and pumpkins are all over the place right now, and they still are, so this seemed appropriate. Here's what you do:

Start with a pumpkin. Dice it into small pieces - for two people, I did about a cup.

Begin to warm up chicken broth in a separate pot - I usually heat up about 4 cups. In a large pan, melt a tablespoon of butter and saute two tablespoons of pumpkin seeds with salt, pepper, and chili flakes. I did NOT use the seeds from the actual pumpkin, but I suppose you could. In any case, be careful! They cook quickly. Mine were a little.....crispy. And the kitchen got a little smoky.

 Drama! Anyway, then remove the smoking pumpkin seeds from the pan and melt another tablespoon of butter. Saute half an onion until soft and then add your diced pumpkin. Saute that for about 15 minutes (or until it's soft enough to mash up) and then take your potato-masher and go at it until it's a pumpkin paste.

Add half a cup (for two people this is how much I use) of Arborio rice to the pumpkin mixture and stir to coat. Then you can start to add your chicken broth, one ladle at a time. Let it absorb into the rice before you add more. And stir, stir, stir!

About halfway through the broth process, I added half a cup of frozen peas which cooked as the rice plumped up.

When the rice is tender - and still gooey - it's done, and you can mix in a little Parmesan if you want, and add salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle your burnt pumpkin seeds on top, and you're good to go!