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Butternut Squash Risotto with Sugared Walnuts

A seasonal dish featuring Butternut squash and walnuts. Perfect as a hearty side or filling enough for a main dish. 
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time1 hr
Course: Side or Main
Servings: 8 servings
Author: Tricia

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup rough chopped walnuts
  • 1 tablespoon butter or Earth Balance, melted
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 2 cups 1/2 inch cubed, peeled, butternut squash
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil plus 1 teaspoon
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 4 cups low sodium vegetable broth
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1 1/2 cups uncooked Arborio rice
  • 1/2 cup chardonnay
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  • Place the walnuts on a baking sheet and bake for 2-3 minutes. Watch the nuts closely as they burn easily. Combine the brown sugar and 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and a pinch of salt. Remove the nuts to a small bowl and drizzle with melted butter. Sprinkle the nuts with the brown sugar pepper mixture and toss to coat. Set aside.
  • Toss the squash with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Arrange the squash in a single layer on a jelly roll pan and bake for 20 minutes or until the squash is tender and lightly browned/caramelized on the bottom. Remove from the oven and set aside.
  • In a medium saucepan, bring the 4 cups of vegetable broth and 1/2 cup of water to a simmer. Do not boil but keep warm on low heat.
  • Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add remaining 1 teaspoon olive oil and add the diced onion. Saute the onion for about 3 minutes or until just tender.
  • Add the minced garlic and saute for 30 seconds.
  • Add the uncooked rice and cook for 2 minutes stirring constantly.
  • Add the wine, stir constantly and cook for 1 minute or until the liquid is nearly absorbed.
  • Add the broth 1/2 cup at a time, stirring constantly until each portion of liquid is nearly absorbed before adding the next. This will take 20 minutes total.
  • Stir in the squash, thyme, lemon zest salt and pepper.
  • Top with walnuts and serve immediately.

Notes

Adapted from Cooking Light, October 2010