Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Pan Seared Cod with Butternut Squash Risotto


By now, you should all know how much I like risotto. It's my favorite way to eat rice and it really it's as complicated as everyone makes it out to be. Sure there's stirring involved, but it's not too much and it produces a beautiful product.

I like making butternut squash risotto in the winter. It's a great use of the seasonal produce and it pairs so well with pork, duck or any winter food. I paired it with fish and broccoli greens this time. It was pretty good, especially with a little sage browned butter.

I use mostly the neck part of the squash since it holds it's shape better. You can use the whole thing, but keep the neck in larger chunks and chop the bulb part small to mix into the risotto. I was also out of white wine when I made this recipe, so I used a brown ale beer instead. It adds a different flavor profile, but it works with the sweetness of the squash.

Ingredients
  • 1/2 butternut squash
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 1/2 small white onion, diced
  • 1 1/2 cups Arborio rice
  • 1/2 cup beer (like a brown ale or amber)
  • 1 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • salt and pepper to taste.
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
Directions
  1. Cut squash in half, scoop out the seeds and roast at 400 degrees for 30-40 minutes or until tender. Dice the neck and bulb part of the squash and set aside
  2. Bring stock to a boil and reduce heat to simmer.
  3. In a separate saucepan, heat olive oil and sautee onion until translucent. Add rice and stir until each grain is well coated and semi-translucent.
  4. Add stock a little at a time, stirring after each addition. Wait until stock is almost completely absorbed before adding more.
  5. Cook about 20 minutes until rice is tender yet still slightly firm. Gently stir in squash and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Just before serving, quickly stir in a little reserved stock and the butter.

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