Thursday, October 7, 2010
Creamy Pumpkin Risotto
I was working on testing holiday recipes for Indulge magazine a few days ago and found myself with some leftover pumpkin puree. In the spirit of Fall and those beautiful shades of red and orange outside, I made pumpkin risotto. Risotto is always a great comfort dish. I love how creamy the rice gets after being stirred and infused with flavourful stock. Risotto sometimes gets a bad rep as a dish that is time-consuming and difficult. The fact is, it's not really either of those. You do have to be not too far from the stove for 20 minutes or so while it's cooking, but it comes together quite quickly and the prep time is pretty minimal. It's an incredibly versatile dish too, perfect to serve as a vegetarian option for Thanksgiving (if you use vegetable stock of course!).
I just love the color the pumpkin gives to any dish it's in. The flavor in the risotto is just perfect and adds that perfect touch to creamy rice. To all my Canadian readers, I want to wish you all a great Thanksgiving! Here is a link to some of my Thanksgiving side dish recipes if you're still thinking about what to serve!
Creamy Pumpkin Risotto
1 1/2 cup of arborio rice
4 cups of chicken stock
3 shallots, diced finely
1 teaspoon of dried sage
1 glass of good quality white wine
A large handful of cremini mushrooms
1/2 cup of pumpkin puree
1/2 cup mascarpone (optional, to use to top the risotto)
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 cup of freshly grated Parmesan, and extra for serving
In a pot, bring the stock to a boil, reduce to a low simmer.
In a saucepan, add a good drizzle of olive oil on medium low heat. Add the shallots, and the dried sage. Once the shallots have softened (about 2 minutes), add the rice and mix, stirring until the rice looks lightly toasted. Add the wine and gently stir. Once the wine has almost evaporated, add the stock one ladle at a time. Keep adding stock once it has almost evaporated in the pan. Season lightly with salt and pepper (the stock will reduce and is salty so make sure not to add too much salt while you're cooking the risotto).
In the meantime, heat some olive oil on medium high heat in a separate pan. Add the sliced mushrooms. Season lightly with salt and pepper and cook for about 5 minutes, or until the mushrooms are cooked through. Set aside.
Keep a constant eye on the rice, adding stock as it gets incorporated into the rice. The risotto should gently simmer for about 16-17 minutes. Once the rice is cooked, add the mushrooms and pumpkin puree. Gently mix them, making sure the pumpkin puree is well stirred through. Fold in the Parmesan.Serve immediately, adding a spoonful of mascarpone and a little more Parmesan. Enjoy!