This is one of my own creations, which came about when we had very few ingredients in the fridge and couldn't be bothered going shopping!
- 2 cups butternut pumpkin, seeded and diced into 1 centimetre square cubes (squash)
- 3 cups chicken stock (or you can use a good quality vegetable stock if you prefer)
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 9 saffron strands (optional)
- 1 dried bay leaf
- 3 tablespoons butter (you can use olive oil if you want to be healthier)
- 3 garlic cloves, chopped finely
- 1 large onion, chopped finely
- 2 medium lemons
- 300 g risotto rice
- 1⁄2 cup basil leaves, roughly torn
- 40 g parmesan cheese, grated
- Heat the oven until it has reached 200 degrees (Celsius).
- Dice the pumpkin and place in the oven in a roasting dish. Roast until soft (but still holding its shape - it will need to be stirred into the risotto so you don't want it to turn to mush). This should take around 25-30 minutes.
- Gently heat the chicken stock, wine, saffron strands and bay leaf in a saucepan until simmering.
- In a large frypan heat the butter until melted and slightly bubbling. Add the garlic, onion and lemon zest and cook over a medium heat until the onion is soft and translucent. Don't allow it to burn.
- Add the rice and stir to coat it in the mixture already in the pan for about 2 minutes.
- Add the stock/wine mixture one ladleful at a time. Stir constantly and add more of the stock as the rice soaks it up. Keep doing this until the rice is cooked and the stock has been used.
- Add the roast pumpkin and lemon juice, and stir until combined.
- Then, add the chopped basil and stir through until just wilted.
- Finally, top with ground black pepper and the grated parmesan and serve with crusty french bread (and maybe a salad).