Thursday, January 15, 2009

Yeah, I'm going there.

So, since I'm feeling uninspired, I'm going to share with you the recipe the butternut squash risotto I made for dinner tonight. Hells of good.

One medium butternut squash, peeled, de-seeded, chopped into 1/2 inch cubes. Toss with 3 tablespoons of olive oil, salt and pepper. Spread on a lined baking sheet, and roast at 375 degrees for about 40 minutes (my oven sucks, so yours might go faster. Looking for soft inside, carmelly brown outside).

While the butternut is roasting, pour 4-6 cups of chicken stock into a pot, and keep over low heat. No simmering or boiling, just keeping it warm.

Take your widest shallow pan, throw it over medium heat, toss in 3 tablespoons olive oil, and 3 tablespoons of butter. While that heats up, finely dice a big yellow onion. Once the oil is hot and butter is melted, throw the onions in the pan and stir to coat in the fat. Sprinkle a little salt and pepper.

After a few minutes, the onions should be nice and soft but not brown. Pour in 2 cups or so (I never measure. I suck) of arborio rice, or hulled barley if you're keen. Stir to coat in the fat, until the rice is kind of see-through. Pour in 1/4-1/2 cup white wine (or if you don't have white wine, do what I did, pour in vodka). Stir it all around until the liquid evaporates.

Ladle in some chicken stock. Just enough so that the rice is mostly submerged. Stir vigorously periodically, until the liquid has mostly evaporated (when you pull your spoon across the bottom, the trail should stay open). Keep doing that same move until you have about 2-3 ladles worth of chicken stock left. Sprinkle in a little nutmeg if you feel the yen.

About this time, your butternut squash should be looking like pure heaven. Take it out of the oven, throw it into your rice and stir roughly. You're looking to break down some of the squash cubes, but not dissolve them all the way.

When the rice is ready for more liquid, toss in the last of the stock, and stir roughly until it's evaporated. Then add a tablespoon of butter, salt, pepper and 1/2 cup of parmigiano cheese. Stir it, man. Should be really thick and really creamy looking. Taste it. Rice done? Taste yummy? All good. Serve it up.

If your rice is still crunchy at all, just stir in some more stock or water until it's perfectly cooked for your liking.

This my friends, is delicious. And now it is yours to impress the shit out of your dinner guests with. If you want to be really fancy, you can sprinkle some chopped sage or parsley over it. I didn't have either, so I just served as is. Also, my boys so don't care about "pretty food." They just want to shovel it in.


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