It's officially comfort food season, and what better way to kick that off than with a hearty, warming bowl of Pumpkin Risotto! Risotto is always a great way to use seasonal veggies throughout the year, and Autumn is no different.
If you've been eyeing up the adorable little pumpkins at the supermarket but are scratching your head on how to cook with them, then this is the perfect recipe for you. You can use any kind of firm squash for this recipe, but it is October after all so we're going to stick with pumpkin.
1 small pumpkin - after peeling and scraping out the seeds, you need about 400g/14oz
1 tbsp olive oil, plus a drizzle for the pumpkin
2 garlic cloves
8 spring onions
200g risotto rice
2 tsp ground cumin
1l hot vegetable stock, plus extra splash if needed
50g grated parmesan (or vegetarian alternative)
small handful coriander, roughly chopped
small handful of toasted pine nuts
- Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/ gas 4. Chop up the pumpkin into 1.5cm cubes. You can eat the pumpkin skin, but if you'd prefer then cut off the skin at this stage. Put it on a baking tray, drizzle over some oil, then roast for 30 mins.
- While the pumpkin is roasting, make the risotto. Peal your garlic then pop it in a sandwich bag, then bash lightly with a rolling pin until it’s crushed.
- Cut up the spring onions into 1cm slices, either with a knife or with your scissors.
- Heat 1 tbsp oil with the butter in your pan over a medium heat – you don't want it too hot or the butter will burn. Add the spring onions and garlic and stir continuously. Once the onions are soft but not going brown, add the rice and cumin. Stir well to coat in the buttery mix for about 1 min.
- Now add half a cup of the stock, and stir regularly until it has all been absorbed by the rice. Carry on adding and stirring in a large splash of stock at a time, until you have used up all the stock – this will take about 20 mins.
- Check the rice is cooked by taking a small bite. If it isn’t, add a splash more stock, and carry on cooking for a bit. Once the rice is soft enough to eat, gently stir in your grated cheese, chopped coriander and roasted pumpkin until the cheese is melted and the pumpkin has broken down a bit into the mixture, and then remove from the heat.
- Plate up and serve with a slice of buttered crusty bread, and top with a drizzle of olive oil, your pine nuts, and an extra sprinkle of parmesan.