Jan 26 2010

Butternut Squash and Sage Risotto

Published by at 5:42 pm under Dinner


Making risotto from scratch is something I’ve wanted to do for a while, so I was excited to try it out on a Saturday night in. Since I won’t pretend to know anything about risotto-making, I used this recipe from Bon Appetit as a base for what I wanted to do, then added my own tweaks. Now, I’ll provide three reasons to love risotto: 

1. It’s totally decadent.

2. It’s relatively quick to make but still seems impressive.

3. Despite #1 above, it’s not terribly bad for you (I think my version had around 400 calories per serving).

Since I look forward to every fall and winter season as an excuse to eat as much butternut squash as possible, I knew I wanted to include it in the dish, along with it’s perfect flavor counterpart, sage. (Have you noticed this? It’s as if they were made to complement each other). I already had a yellow onion and some parmesan cheese handy, too, so viola! Easy decisions. 

I learned that the key to making perfect risotto is in the timing. Don’t rush it: As you add the broth to the rice bit by bit, wait for each portion to fully absorb before adding the next batch. The result will be much richer and creamier than if you move even just a little faster. 

Butternut Squash and Sage Risotto

Ingredients (Serves 4):

1 and 3/4 cups medium-grain rice

5 cups chicken broth

1/4 cup rice wine vinegar

1 yellow onion, chopped

1 small butternut squash, peeled and chopped

1 small bunch sage, chopped

2 tbsp cayenne pepper 

Salt and black pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place squash on baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil, adding salt and pepper as desired. Place squash pan in oven and cook for 20 minutes, or until squash is tender and browning. Bring broth to a boil and add vinegar. Saute onion in olive oil or butter for 3 minutes in large pot, then add rice. Add 1/4 cup of broth mixture to the onion and rice pan at a time, waiting for broth to fully absorb before adding more. When broth has been fully incorporated into the rice, toss in butternut squash and sage, and mix fully. Add cayenne pepper, salt and black pepper to taste.

5 responses so far

5 Responses to “Butternut Squash and Sage Risotto”

  1. SHon 27 Jan 2010 at 8:47 am

    I love sage too! Isn’t it weird that it’s kind of furry?

  2. Livon 27 Jan 2010 at 12:21 pm

    Agreed: The texture is totally weird! At least it cooks normally, though.

  3. Toddon 02 Mar 2010 at 3:47 pm

    I love Butternut Squash and how youre incorporating it as well as the Morning After Crepes for late night muchies.

    Did you know?:

    Squash has an ancient history originating back to 3000 BCE, where the Ancient American Indians commonly consumed what they called “the apple of God”. The seeds of squash was believed to increase fertility, thus were commonly planted close to many homes.

  4. Livon 08 Mar 2010 at 9:21 pm

    Hi Todd, glad you liked the butternut squash recipe! Thanks for the fun facts.

  5. Riverson 27 Mar 2010 at 3:25 pm

    Liv! I’m so impressed with you. When you told me a couple of months ago that you’d been cooking a lot I had no idea you meant that you’d been making things like risotto from scratch! Em and I started reading your blog a couple of hours ago, and since she left to go back to Jackson I’ve been reading recipes during the commercials between episodes of House (ha). Anyway, just wanted you to know that I’m really impressed and sort of inspired! I think I might try a few things on here. Maybe even this one. Love you!