As I was looking at my “to try” list I noticed that there were a few recipes with kabocha in them. Kabocha is a winter squash otherwise known as the Japanese pumpkin. It is sweet and it has the texture of a pumpkin. I though that I would do a kabocha theme for this weeks menu. At the top of the list was this recipe for a kabocha risotto topped with pancetta, sage and toasted pumpkin seeds. I wanted the risotto to both have the flavour of oven roasted kabocha puree and the texture of solid pieces of kabocha. I used half of the kabocha to make pumpkin puree and the other half I cut into bit sized pieces. This risotto was pretty good. The sweetness of the kabocha went surprisingly well in a risotto with parmigiano reggiano. For lunch today I had some of the leftover kabocha risotto with some leftover salami, which I fired, on top. Regular pumpkin or butternut squash would also work well here.
- 1 kabocha squash (Japanese pumpkin)
- 3 cups chicken stock
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 onion (chopped)
- 1 cup arborio rice
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 1/2 cup parmigiano reggiano (grated)
- 1 ounce pancetta
- 1 handful sage leaves
- 1 handful toasted pumpkin seeds
- Cut the kabocha in half and use one half to make pumpkin puree.
- Remove the skin from the other half of the kabocha and cut into bite sized pieces.
- Heat the chicken stock in a pan and keep warm while making the risotto.
- Melt the butter in a large sauce pan.
- Add the onions and saute until tender.
- Add the rice and saute until the rice becomes translucent, about 2 minutes.
- Add the wine and deglaze the bottom of the pan.
- Add the kabocha puree and kabocha pieces.
- Add 1/2 cup of the chicken stock to the rice and stir until the rice absorbs it. Continue to do this until the rice is cooked al dente, about 20-30 minutes. The kabocha pieces should be tender by now.
- Remove from the heat and stir in the parmigiano reggiano.
- Fry the pancetta in a pan.
- Add the sage ad fry until crispy.
- Remove from the heat and add the toasted pumpkin seeds.
- Serve the risotto topped with the pancetta, sage and pumpkin seeds.