Hello Guys,

This post has been a few more days in the making than planned but I’m finally back in this space sharing with you. And it feels good! This past week and a bit I’ve been back in my hometown spending time with family and friends and coming up at the end of this month and the next there will be more of that as Rob and I head to Dubai again to work and stay with his folks. Speaking of Rob it’s his birthday tomorrow and his ‘Hungarian birthday’ tonight, because in Hungary where his mother originates from they celebrate the night before the actual day, so wish him a happy birthday! But enough of this and that let’s talk about the butternut squash rice-otto.

It’s a dish I’ve been wanting to share for ages and today is the day. It couldn’t be much better actually as in my opinion this is a paerfect weekend dinner dish. For when you want to get a little fancy but not break too much of a sweat. Because really it’s pretty easy to make but requires a little bit of time and some handy work. Only an hour and a bit of grating though, like I said ‘not break too much of a sweat’.

I pair the butternut squash with sage because it’s a classic and I love it. Making the dish I also decided to add some white wine because it adds a nice flavour and really the alcohol evaporates but if you aren’t feeling that just swap it for some more vegetable stock. I’m also using brown rice because why not? And it’s better for us. If you are being very good you could soak the rice over night or for a few hours prior to cooking up the dish but if you are not feeling that either just make sure you rinse and drain it well. You could also use traditional risotto rice of course, simply change the method to the traditional stirring feast if so.

To go along with the risotto I made some marinated mushrooms which add a lovely savoury and earthy touch to the dish. But with that said I have to run as we are off to some friends’ house for dinner. Wishing you a lovely Friday night and weekend ahead with lots of good food and company. Enjoy! x

 

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BUTTERNUT SQUASH BROWN RICE-OTTO


YIELDS: 3-4 portions  /  TIME: 60 min
For the risotto:

1 medium butternut squash, peeled and half cubed / half grated
1 red onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves
1 tbsp dried sage
1 cup brown rice, rinsed or soaked and drained
3 cups vegetable stock
1/3 cup dry white wine, or sub more vegetable stock
1/4 cup nutritional yeast, optional
Olive oil
Sea salt and black pepper, to taste

 

For the marinated mushrooms:

8 chestnut mushrooms, sliced
5 large shiitake mushrooms, sliced
1/4 cup soya sauce or tamari
2 tbsp white wine vinegar
1 tbsp maple syrup
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 tsp dried mixed herbs

Preheat your oven to 200 degrees celsius.

Stir together all the ingredients for the mushroom marinade in a shallow bowl and then mix in the sliced mushrooms. Place a saucer or similar on top of the mushrooms and a heavy object, such as a jar of dried food such as popcorn kernels, on top as a weight. Leave to marinade until risotto is ready to serve, mixing ones or twice in the process.

Place a sauce pan over medium heat and add a splash of oil along with the red onion. Saute until translucent, roughly 3-4 minutes, and then add your garlic and dried sage. Saute another minute or until the garlic and sage is very fragrant and then mix in the grated butternut squash along with a pinch of sea salt.

Cover the pot with a lid and sweat the mixture for roughly 5-7 minutes. The grated butternut should have released a lot of liquid, shrunk in size and become soft at this stage.

Whilst the grated butternut is sweating you can place your cubed butternut on a lined baking tray along with a drizzle of olive oil, a pinch of sea salt and some black pepper. An optional addition could be some extra dried sage. Coat the cubes and spread them out. Roast in the oven for 20-30 minutes or until tender and with some colour, flipping half way.

When the grated butternut has been sweated go ahead and add your rice along with vegetable stock. Bring it all to a boil and then simmer covered for 30 minutes. Give it a stir ones in a while to break down the rice a little.

After 30 minutes of simmering add your white wine and mix it in well. Let simmer uncovered for another 10 minutes, stirring often. Then add your roasted butternut squash chunks and mix in well whilst simmering another 5 minutes.

Take your risotto off the heat and add your nutritional yeast if using it and mix well.

Serve with your marinated mushrooms and a sprinkle of dried sage.


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