A squash risotto makes a pretty much perfect meal for vegetarians. I can never resist a good vegetarian risotto and sometimes it's good to move on from the typical mushroom risotto. I previously told you how I detected harlequin squashes and have been a fan ever since. Today I'm making a risotto with them and I serve a fresh lemon courgette and radish flower salad made out of my own garden's produce with it.
1 small courgette
Make the side salad first. Slice the courgette into very thin long slices. You can do this with a cheese slicer or a peeling knife. Heat some olive oil in a pan and quickly and lightly fry the courgette bands in there. Squeeze some lemon juice on them and sprinkle radish flowers on the top before serving. Radish flowers have a lovely peppery flavour, so sometimes it's nice to let them grow to flower, and edible flowers make a wonderful food decoration anyway.
2 cups arborio rice
1 harlequin squash
2 garlic cloves
1l vegetable stock
1 cup dry white wine
Vegetarian pasta cheese
Then carry on with risotto making. Chop the squash into small cubes for the risotto. Also chop the onion and garlic and prepare the vegetable stock. You can make your own stock from scratch, which requires a bit more effort but also pays off, you can buy a ready made one or mix some with vegetable stock powder. I prefer the powder, because it's easy to always have around and make quickly, as I use large quantities of vegetable stock. I normally add fresh parsley to the stock that I use for a risotto.
Heat olive oil in a pan and fry the onion and garlic. When they are glossy add the butter, let it melt and add the arborio rice. Stir until the rice is translucent and then make the white wine addition. Let the wine evaporate and add some of the vegetable stock to the pan.
Let the risotto simmer under the lid and stir it often. After about 15 minutes add the squash and more vegetable stock and simmer until the rice is al dente and the squash is cooked. Season with salt and pepper and grate vegetarian pasta cheese (vegetarian parmesan) into the pan. At this stage add more parsley, wine or butter if needed.
Serve with more vegetarian pasta cheese on the top and with the side salad. Enjoy!