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Butternut Squash Risotto

| February 6, 2014

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 Butternut Squash Risotto

Served as a side dish or a simple entrée, this easy rice dish is sure to become a family favorite.



Serves 4

  1 quart homemade chicken stock, or low-sodium canned chicken broth  
  4 ounces pancetta or thick-cut bacon, cut into ¼-inch pieces  
  1 large yellow onion, peeled and chopped  
  12 ounces butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into ½-inch cubes  
  1 cup Arborio rice  
  4 cloves garlic, peeled and minced  
  teaspoon ground nutmeg  
  Pinch crushed red pepper flakes (optional)  
  ¼ cup dry white wine  
  ½ cup Parmesan cheese, finely grated, plus more for garnish  
  2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened  
    Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper  
    Fresh chives, chopped, for garnish  




  1. Pour the chicken stock in a large saucepan and set over medium-high heat.  Bring to a boil, and then reduce to a simmer.  Continue simmering the stock until ready to use.
  2. In a large skillet set over medium heat, cook the pancetta, stirring often, until golden and crispy.  With a slotted spoon, remove the pancetta from the skillet and set aside on a paper towel-lined baking sheet.  Pour off all but 1 tablespoon of the pancetta grease and return the skillet to the heat.  Add the onion and squash.  Cook, stirring often, until tender, 4 to 5 minutes.
  3. Add the rice, garlic, nutmeg, and crushed red pepper to the skillet.  Cook for 1 additional minute.  Pour in the wine and simmer until the wine has evaporated.  Then, pour in 1 cup of the warm chicken stock.  Allow the rice to cook in the gently simmering stock, stirring often, until most of the stock has evaporated.  Continue adding the stock, 1 cup at a time, allowing the liquid to almost completely evaporate before adding another cup of stock.
  4. Once all of the chicken stock has been added and the rice is al dente, stir in the reserved pancetta, Parmesan cheese, and butter.  Season the risotto to taste with salt and black pepper and serve immediately with a garnishing of fresh chives and additional Parmesan cheese.

Nathan Scott is the author of Nathan Scott’s Open Kitchen:  Annual Recipes 2011

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 Copyright © 2014 by Nathan Scott.  All rights reserved.

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Category: Open Kitchen

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