Oh risotto! You creamy, decadent, delicious bowl of carby, cheesy goodness! You warm me up on a colds winter night and never fail to satisfy...EXCEPT when i try and make you healthy with long/short grain brown rice and you end up a bowl of barely cook rice ! BUT, ALAS, i have come to a solution! WHOLEMEAL ARBORIO RICE! How excited i was to find this product at my local markets and even more excited when i took a bite of you in my homemade risotto recipe and you were cooked to perfection!
I think its clear that nearly everyone loves a good bowl of risotto...especially in these colder months! Though, admittedly it isn't the HEALTHIEST option considering it mainly constitutes of refined white rice, loads of butter and a tonne of cheese! Now i am going to admit i didn't substitute all of these naughty (yet yummy) ingredients in this risotto recipe because..well..then..IT WOULD'NT BE A RISOTTO! Though i have substituted the white rice for brown rice which makes it a lot lower GI, reducing the insulin spike after consumption, increasing fibre intake and ensuring you are fuller for longer! So give the recipe a go and let me know what you think about the substitution of brown rice! I didn't even notice it! You can find brown arborio rice at most health food stores, markets and specialty food shops! In Canberra you can find it at the Fyshwick Fresh Food Markets, Belconnen Fresh Food Markets and Farmers Markets on Saturday morning! If you have found it somewhere else add it in the comments to let others know!
½ butternut pumpkin, peeled and cut into cubes
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tbsp butter + 1 tbsp butter
3 cups thinly sliced cup mushrooms
1 finely chopped brown onion
2 tablespoons chopped fresh sage + 5 leaves
5 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups uncooked Brown Arborio rice
5 cups unsalted chicken stock
ground black pepper
¼ cup mascarpone cheese
¼ cup Parmesan cheese, grated
Preheat oven to 200°C. Place pumpkin on a baking tray and bake for 30 - 45 mins or until soft. Allow to cool and then blend in a processor until smooth.
Heat oil and butter in a deep dish fry pan over high heat. Add mushrooms, onion, 2 tablespoons chopped sage, and garlic; sauté; 5 minutes. Add rice; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Stir in 1 cup pumpkin puree, ½ a cup of stock, and a pinch of salt. Cook over medium heat, and stir regularly to ensure the liquid is being absorbed. Once absorbed ass more stock and continue the process until all stock is used and the rice is tender and cooked.
While cooking, heat final tbsp. of butter in small fry pan and add the whole sage leaves. Cook until crispy and then remove onto paper towel to absorb excess oil.
Once cooked, remove pan from heat; stir in reserved pumpkin puree, pepper, and mascarpone. Divide risotto evenly among 4 bowls; sprinkle with crispy sage and Parmesan cheese. ENJOY!