I think this might be Meghan’s all-time favourite dish that I have ever made for her. It’s creamy, rich, and complex and most importantly, does not contain mushrooms.
5 cups of vegetable stock
1/3 cup of raw pumpkin seeds
3 tablespoons of olive oil
1 cup of cipollini onions, finely chopped (or shallots)
1 tablespoon of minced garlic
3 cups of chopped squash (I used butternut), cut into cubes
1 1/2 cups arborio rice
1 tablespoon dried thyme
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1/2 cup white wine
2 tablespoons of tamari (or soy sauce)
1/2 teaspoon each of salt and pepper
sprigs of cilantro for garnish
Daiya cheese to taste
1) Preheat oven to 375. In a large pot, simmer vegetable stock on low.
2) Heat a large sauce pan over medium high heat and add the olive oil. Introduce pumpkin seeds all at once. Stir constantly being careful not to allow the pumpkin seeds to burn. You will start to have some seeds that “pop” – do not be alarmed, this means the pumpkin seeds are nearly done. Once most of the seeds have started to brown and before any of them have gone black, remove from the seeds from the pan (but leaving the oil in the pan).
3) Using the same oil as was used for the pumpkin seeds, sautee the garlic and onions for 2-3 minutes.
4) Add half a cup of vegetable stock and the butternut squash then reduce heat to low. Cover and let simmer for 20-25 minutes until the squash is tender. Remove lid from simmering squash once tender and let the liquid cook off.
5) Add another tablespoon of oil, the arborio rice, and saute 2-3 minutes. Add toasted pumpkin seeds, wine, tamari, salt, pepper, oregano, and thyme. Continue to add the vegetable stock, half a cup at a time, constantly stirring the risotto. Once the risotto is soft and the sauce is creamy, the risotto is ready.
Serves 2, with plenty of leftover risotto for another 2 meals for 2 people.