Though some of us are still dealing with heat and Summer weather, Fall still a distant thought on the horizon, many of us have begun to see the changes, as leaves subtly fade, Golden from the sun, and the breeze no longer feels warm and sweet, but has the undertones of crisp and refreshing. Sometimes these transitional times make it hard to decide what to have for dinner. Finding a balance between hot and cold in a meal can change flavors and transform one meal to another and serve many purposes of satisfaction.
If you want a warm dinner as the air becomes chill or a refreshing and filling comfort as the coolness of night settles onto a warm day, take a cue from this dynamic meal, depending on where you find yourself and what you’re craving.
This risotto can be served and enjoyed hot or lightly chilled, with lots of fresh Olive Oil, herbs and parmesan sprinkled over top).
Three Mushroom Risotto with Baked Squash Recipe (4 servings)
1 cup chanterelle, lightly chopped
1 cup oyster, lightly chopped
1 cup shiitake, lightly chopped
1 tbsp diced garlic
1 medium shallot, diced
1 tbsp chopped thyme
1 tbsp chopped sage
1 cup arborio rice, rinsed
2-3 cup unsalted vegetable broth, heated
1 large butternut squash
1 tbsp butter
extra virgin olive oil, to taste
a good quality hunk of parmesan, grated to taste
fresh cracked black pepper
Preheat oven to 375F, to cook the squash while you prepare the risotto. Place the squash on a baking dish, make a few incisions, with a knife or fork, and place in the oven when ready. The squash will be done when the skin begins to peel away from the meat and is nice and soft, about 45minutes.
In a large saucepan on high heat, sauté the mushrooms, shallots, garlic, butter, herbs, a dash of salt and fresh black pepper for a few minutes to allow all the flavors to coat one another.
Lower the heat to medium and add the rice. Sauté to assimilate the rice into the mixture, adding one more good pinch of salt.
Begin to add the vegetable broth, one ladle at a time, stirring slowly into the pan. Risotto should be continuously stirred, to avoid burning and sticking to the bottom as well as is what gives it that nice creamy texture as the starches from the rice release.
Remove the squash from the oven when ready and the risotto is formed. Serve the squash cut into big chunks, drizzled with olive oil, salt, and fresh black pepper, to taste. Dish the risotto and serve with a good drizzle of olive oil, fresh parmesan and black pepper.
Pauline, Apparis Bloguette
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