This was my dinner tonight and my dinner alone, P is not a big fan of rice dishes and no meat,unfortunately for him as far as I am concerned.
I found the recipe in my friend's copy of this magazine. I have always thought this was a quality foodie magazine, but the latest issue has convinced me that a subscription is definately in order.
I found at least four things I must cook, the first is out of the way, being the risotto for tonight's dinner. On the weekend I want to give the red roast duck curry a whirl. For a dinner with my in-laws date yet to be determined I think I can safely say I won't be able to beat the dessert on the cover, brownie pudding with chocolate sauce. And for a mid-week vegetarian soup next week I really must try the minted pea soup.
I thought the risotto turned out very well and I loved the honey flavoured pumpkin mixed with the lemon and yoghurt. However I did alter the recipe as it used mascarpone instead of yoghurt and italian parsley instead of baby spinach and I also embellished with some dried chillies.
So I will present the recipe as provided in the article with my alternatives and additions in italics. Because if I had mascarpone on hand I bloody well would have used it!
Serves 4-6 900g pumpkin, cut into 1cm cubes 1/4 cup olive oil 1/2tbs honey, plus extra to drizzle 850ml vegetable stock 1 onion, chopped 2 sticks celery, finely chopped 2cm piece of ginger grated 1 cup arborio rice 2/3cup white wine juice of 1/2 lemon 1/2 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley, plus extra to garnish (baby spinach) 2 tbs mascarpone, plus extra to serve (plain yoghurt)
Preheat the over to 220c Lay pumpkin in an even layer on a large baking tray and drizzle with 2 tablespoons of oil. Season with salt and pepper. Roast for 15 minutes, then remove and drizzle with 1/2 teaspoon of honey, tossing well to coat each piece. Roast for a further 15 minutes until cooked and golden.
Place stock in a saucepn and keep at a simmer over low heat.
Heat remaining tablespoon of oil in a large heavy-based pan over low heat. Add onion and stir for 2-3 minutes until soft. Add celery and cook for 1 minute, then add ginger and rice and cook for a further minute, stirring to coat grains. At this point I smashed two dried red chillies in my pestle and mortar and added them to the rice.
Increase heat to medium-low, add wine and cook until absorbed. Add stock a ladleful at a time, allowing each to be absorbed before adding the next. Continue for 15 minutes or until rice is cooked but still firm to the bite
(It took me at least 30 minutes which has always been a standard time for making risotto for me. I like my risotto reasonably wet as well so when I add the last ladleful of stock it is not to be completely incorporated into the rice but allow a bit of a gravy to develop).
Add lemon juice, pumpkin and parsley (baby spinach). Season, then stir in mascarpone (I omitted this step for the yoghurt as I thought with the lemon it would be tangy enough and it didn't need more from the yoghurt. Also I decided not to season as I went a bit heavy on the salt on the pumpkin. When I tipped the roasted pumpkin into the risotto it came with seasoned olive oil and honey juices which really added quite a bit of flavour).
Serve with a dollop of mascarpone (yoghurt), a drizzle of honey (damn forgot to do that!) and extra parsley.