Dinner: Roasted butternut squash risotto

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Happy 2015! After the excessive feedings of the festive period I’ve decided to make something low fuss and healthyish to start the year and get back on to healthy eating. I also realised that it’s pretty impossible to make a plate of risotto look appealing on a picture. Oh well. This is my standard risotto recipe with added squash and herbs and I eyeball the quantities in a lot of places, so feel free to experiment with different amounts of ingreedients. Risotto is probably one of my favorite dishes and while it does take a while to make, it’s pretty low fuss throughout.

Recipe (makes 4 big servings):

1 butternut squash, pealed and cut into chunks

300g risotto rice (or pearl barley for variety)

1L veg stock

one glass of white wine (I used chineese cooking wine because that’s what I had on hand)

1 onion, chopped

sage, either fresh or dry

a few tbsp olive oil

50g margarine

50 g grated cheese of your choice

optional nuritious yeast and 2 cloves of garlic, chopped

Pre-heat the oven to 200 degrees C. Coat the squash chunks in olive oil and sage, then put in a shallow roasting tray and pop in the oven for 30 min. They should be nice and soft when you take them out.

In the mean time make the veg stock and fry the onion in half the butter over low heat for 10 mins. The internet tells me this is called “sweating the onions”. Add the rice and mix well, cooking for a few more minutes. Turn the heat to medium and add the wine, stirring regularly until all of the wine is cooked off. Now start adding the stock one ladle at a time, stiring regularly so the rice doesn’t stick. If you find it’s sticking a lot, turn own the heat. While this is happening you can shallow fry garlic and sage in some oil (or alternatively, roast in the oven) for 10 mins. Be careful not to burn the sage.

The risotto should be done in 25 mins or so. At this point you can add nutritious yeast, protein powder etc. When the butternut squash is done roasting, mash it up roughly with a masher or fork, then add to the risotto. Take it off the heat and mix in the remaining butter and the cheese. Stir and leave for a few minutes to set. I added lots of sage and the garlic on top and then devoured it.

Price per portion: £1.90

Protein content: 10 grams per portion, more if you add protein powder



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