Butternut Squash, Bacon & Sage Risotto
- ½ small butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cubed (about 1 ½ cups)
- 1 Tbsp. olive oil
- ½ tsp. coarse salt, divided
- 5-6 cups unsalted vegetable or chicken stock
- 1 Tbsp. maple syrup
- ½ tsp. nutmeg
- Pinch cayenne pepper
- 4 strips bacon, chopped
- 4 leaves fresh sage, chopped
- 1 small shallot, minced
- 1 ¼ cups arborio rice
- 1 tsp. coarse salt
- ¼ tsp. ground black pepper
- Shaved parmesan and microgreens, for serving
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
- Place squash cubes on a greased baking sheet and toss with olive oil and ¼ teaspoon salt. Roast for 25-35 minutes, until soft and caramelized on the edges. Transfer squash to a blender. Add remaining ¼ teaspoon salt, stock, maple syrup, nutmeg and cayenne pepper and puree until very smooth (mixture should be watery). Place squash sauce in a saucepan on low heat to keep it warm.
- In a Dutch oven, cook bacon pieces until crispy. Transfer to a paper towel to drain. Fry sage leaves in the bacon fat until crispy. Place on the paper towel to dry. Add shallot to the bacon fat and stir for 30-60 seconds. Stir in arborio rice, salt and black pepper and bring to medium-high heat.
- Add a ladle of squash sauce, stirring constantly, until liquid is absorbed, then add another ladle. Continue stirring and adding a ladle of squash sauce and allowing liquid to absorb, until all the sauce is used up and the rice is al dente. Taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary.
- Serve risotto with crispy bacon and sage pieces, Parmesan cheese and microgreens.
Butternut Squash, Bacon & Sage Risotto from The Gourmet RD