Butternut squash risotto with sage butter
This week's Kitchen Kidnap sees not one but two Italian stallions in our kitchen as Gino superfan Sophie Murra has been nominated by her Italian husband Fabio!
Fabio secretly contacted us to tell all about his wife and how much she loves to cook - including the fact that in the eight years that they have been together Sophie hasn't cooked pasta or risotto more than three times.
Fabio would love Sophie to get a few tips and tricks from Gino so that she won't worry so much about cooking Italian food for her husband... and her mother-in-law!
You can find the recipe for Gino's butternut squash risotto below
1 Large Butternut squash5 tablespoons Olive oil1 large onion, peeled and chopped300g Arborio rice1.2 litres warm Vegetable stock made with two stock cubes30g Salted butter40g Freshly grated parmesan cheese 1 Tablespoon freshly chopped sage leavessalt and pepper to tasteFor the sage butter40g Unsalted butter12 small fresh sage leaves
Peel and deseed the butternut squash then cut into 1cm cubes. Place them on a roasting tray, drizzle with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Place in the oven and roast for 40 minutes until the squash is tender.
Reserve half the cooked cubes. Place the other half in a blender and blitz to a smooth paste.
Heat the remaining oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat and fry the onion for about 5 minutes until softened
Meanwhile, make the sage butter. Melt the unsalted in a small pan. When foaming add the sage leaves and cook for 2 minutes. Set aside
Add the rice to the onions and stir constantly for 2 minutes so the grains toast in the oil. Stir the butternut squash puree.
Now, over a medium heat so that the mixture is just bubbling, start adding the stock a ladleful at a time, stirring continuously until each ladleful is absorbed before adding the next one. It is ready when all the stock has been absorbed and the rice is cooked but still a little bite. (this will take about 18 minutes).
Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the salted butter very quickly for at least 15 seconds. This is very important as it will create a fantastic creamy texture.
Now stir in the reserved squash cubes, parmesan and chopped sage leaves and season with the salt and pepper. If the risotto needs loosening at this stage, add a little hot water or stock.
Serve the risotto in warm bowls and spoon over a little sage butter