I want to preface this post by stating the fact that this is my first recipe post in which I have actually made the meal, took pictures and then posted it about it. All of my other recipe posts have merely been a recipe I have made at some point but with photos found online so, please excuse an amateurish photos and/or an excessive of photos used to explain steps. I know not anything about photographing food... Or cooking food, really, for that matter. I have a few go-to showstoppers (this recipe being one of them) but Taco Bell is probably the biggest staple of my diet... And that, is closely followed by Chipotle. Chicken taco - what is up?! So.. now that we've gotten that messy little admission out of the way, I want to share with you one of my favorite dishes (of my 10 dish repertoire) to make... Mostly because I am vain and I love the accolades I receive when I make it :). The best part: The end result makes the dish look harder to make than it is... Win-win.
So, without further ado, let's get started:
*Probably the most difficult piece of this recipe is gathering your ingredients. The entire recipe hinges on you finding pumpkins, which pretty much precludes the likelihood of you making it anytime other than October. It can also be a bit of a challenge to find the mini pumpkins if you're wanting to do the whole mini pumpkin "individual serving" thing. You can also apply this dish to a larger format by making a serving dish out of a larger pumpkin... Which I'm sure you could have extrapolated on your own :). Obviously, you can tell what my preference is... Girls always love all things "mini" though, so go figure.
- 5-8 mini pumpkins (proportions depend on what size pumpkins you get.. I got ones that we about 2.5" in height - they had faces painted on them.. so naturally, I scrubbed that biznaz CLEAN off!)
- 2 Tbsps salted butter
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 1.5 cups Arborio rice
- 4.5 cups chicken broth
- 1/4 cup of grated parmesan cheese
- Salt and pepper
1. Steam pumpkins for about 20-30 min or until tender enough to easily pierce the pumpkin's top (if you don't have a steamer, you can place the pumpkins in a bowl filled halfway with water inside a larger pot filled about a quarter full with water and place a plate over the inner bowl. Place the pot on high heat and then put the top on the pot when the bottom layer of water begins to boil). See photos below.
*TBH, I got a bit impatient with the whole "steaming" thing and eventually just added the pumpkins to the boiling water directly and let them boil for about 5 min which made them just soft enough to easily cut into and scoop out the contents of the pumpkin. It seemed to work pretty well, but it could have just been luck ;)
2. While the pumpkins are doing their thing, in a separate pot, stir butter and chopped onion at med-high heat for approx. 4-5 min till the onions are limp.
3. Add rice and stir until it turns opaque (after about 3 min).
4. Add the chicken broth and bring to a boil at high heat, stirring often. Once the mixture reaches a boil, reduce the heat and simmer rice stirring often until tender for about 15-20 min.
5. Once the pumpkins are soft enough to pierce, take them out of the water, and cut a holes around the tops to remove them (as you would for a jack-o-lantern :). Then scoop out the contents of the pumpkins to create a clean bowls for your risotto! See photos below. *Make sure you save the tops and cut them into a clean circle to make a little "hat" for each pumpkin. "They can leave their hat on." LOL.
6. Add a little more broth to the rice if you want a creamier texture for your risotto. Then stir in the cheese until it melts.
7. Salt and pepper the risotto to taste and then scoop it into the pumpkin bowls and add their hat.
8. BASK IN YOUR PRAISE.
And.... pat 'yoself on the back for being "krafty!"