Manga che ti passa (Eat and it will be over, you’ll feel betterWe love risotto and at this time of year there are numerous squashes that would make a fine addition to risotto so ask me why I chose the tough to peel butternut squash…that is what was on the shopping list and the store didn’t have the already peeled and cubed packages in the produce section so with that said I perused Marcella Hazan’s book for info on her method, but I ended up going with Giuliano Hazan’s version for the most part, one exception is the ever-present addition of white wine as my first liquid addition and followed with a good chicken stock for the remainder of the liquid…
serves 4 to 6 people
1/2 cup yellow onion, finely chopped (I had a combination of shallots and onions)
3-4 tablespoons butter
1 pound butternut squash (about 3 cups diced)
freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups Italian Arborio or Carnaroli rice
5 cups homemade meat broth, or 1 beef bouillon cube dissolved in 5 cups water
*I opted for chicken stock
2 tablespoons Italian flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
1/2 cup parmigiano Reggiano, freshly grated
1. Put the onion and 2 tablespoons of the butter in a large heavy bottomed pot over medium low heat. Sauté the onion until it turns golden.
2. While the onion is sauteing, remove the rind and the seeds from the squash, then cut it into 3/4 inch cubes. When the onion is ready, add the squash to the pan with about 1/2 cup of water. Season with salt and pepper and cook until the squash is tender, about 10-15 minutes.
3. While the squash is cooking, heat the broth in a sauce pot and keep it at a very low simmer.
4. When the squash is tender and all the water has evaporated, add the rice and stir until it is well coated. Add 1/2 cup white wine and cook for 2 minutes to burn off the alcohol. Add a couple of ladlefuls of the heated broth and stir with a wooden spoon. Continue stirring and adding broth to the rice as the liquid in the pot evaporates. The right amount of broth to add is just enough to produce the consistency of a rather thick soup and it is important to wait until all the liquid has evaporated before adding more broth. The rice will be done in about 20 minutes, when it is firm to the bite but not still crunchy or chalky in the center. At the end the risotto should have a creamy, almost “wavy” consistency.
5. Remove from the heat and stir in the chopped parsley, the grated parmigiano and the remaining tablespoon of butter. Taste for salt and serve at once.