Paired with 2018 Elizabeth Pinot Noir
- 1 cup Arborio or Carnaroli Rice
- 3 to 4 cups chicken stock. If using store-bought stock, check the amount of salt, and adjust your salt addition appropriately.
- Assorted sliced mushrooms – I favor Chanterelles, Morels, Maitake, and Trumpets
- ½ medium yellow onion, minced
- 1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
- ¼ cup crumbled goat cheese
- 2 tablespoons chopped Fresh Thyme
- 1 clove garlic
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- Dry white wine
- 1” cubed butternut squash (About 2 cups)
- 1 tablespoon Olive oil
- ¼ tsp Cinnamon
- ¼ tsp Cumin
- ¼ tsp Ginger
- 1/8 tsp Allspice
- Salt & Pepper to taste
- 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh sage
The beauty of this dish is it can be made vegetarian or vegan with just a few adjustments. On the flip side, meat can be added for more flavor.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees
- In a large bowl, mix squash, olive oil, cinnamon, cumin, ginger, allspice, salt, and pepper.
- Place on a roasting pan.
- Roast for about 20 to 25 minutes until squash is cooked through and starts to caramelize.
- Remove from oven and set aside.
- Place heavy-bottomed pot on medium heat for three minutes.
- Add butter, when melted, Sautee onion, garlic, mushrooms, and thyme for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Turn up to medium-high and add risotto, constantly stirring for three minutes.
- Deglaze with 1/3 cup white wine for 1 minute
- Add 2 cups stock, give a good stir, and turn down to low.
- Cover and continue on low to medium-low heat for 15 minutes or so, adding enough stock to allow the risotto to absorb liquid without becoming mushy, but fully cooked. Aye, there’s the rub. Risotto is a dish for which you need to develop a feel to make it perfect. I prefer to take a cautious approach, adding small amounts of stock, rather than dumping a ton at once. This method takes extra diligence, stirring more frequently, to ensure equal absorption in the whole batch. The good news is if it’s not perfect, it’s still really good. When it comes to risotto, I prefer to err on the side of overcooking vs. undercooking.
- When the risotto is close to being done, stir in the goat and parmesan cheese.
- Cover and turn off the heat.
- Heat a medium sauté pan on medium to medium-high heat and add butter.
- When butter is melted and turns brown, add sage and turn down to medium.
- Stir for two minutes and toss in squash. Continue at medium for five minutes.
- While squash is heating, portion risotto into bowls. Spoon squash on top of the risotto. If you like you can add a bit of grated parmesan.
Serve with Pinot Noir
This recipe is almost vegetarian from the start. The only needed adjustment is to substitute vegetable stock for chicken stock.
There are several vegan cheese producers available.
You can easily add your left-over turkey from Thanksgiving into this dish. My recommendation would be to use about 12 ounces of boneless thigh meat.
- Cut meat into chunks and add to pot after butter has melted. Cook at medium heat for ten minutes before adding mushrooms, onion, garlic, and thyme.