Crown prince squash is one of my new squash favourites. It is such a lovely rich and nutty squash, and it was the perfect vegetable choice for this spelt risotto recipe I developed. With its rough pale greenish and blueish skin it might look suspicious at first, but the skin hides a lovely and succulent squash within.
The method for making this dish is basically the same as making risotto. The only thing is that you would use pearled spelt instead of arborio rice. I'm a big fan of pearled barley, and have now also noticed that pearled spelt is an equally brilliant ingredient for cooking vegetarian dishes.
This is what you'll need:
150 g peeled and cooked chestnuts
2 garlic cloves
2 tbsp vegetable stock powder + 1l water
1 tbsp olive oil
1 cup pearled spelt
25 g butter
1 dl dry white wine
50 g emmental cheese
1 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
1 tsp salt
1 tsp ground black pepper
This is how to make this dish:
Prepare the squash: Peel and cut it into about 1 cm long dices and remove the seeds. Then finely chop the shallots and garlic cloves.
Make the vegetable stock by mixing vegetable stock powder with water and heating it up. You can also use any other vegetable stock.
Heat the olive oil in a large pan and lightly sweat the shallots and garlic. Add the squash dices to the pan and heat through for a couple of minutes.
Add the butter to the pan and let it melt, then also add the pearled spelt to the pan. Once the spelt has absorbed the butter, add the wine and let it evaporate. Reduce the heat of the pan slightly.
Make first addition of a few ladles of the vegetable stock and let the risotto simmer slowly under the lid. Keep making vegetable stock additions, so that the risotto doesn't dry up, stirring often.
After about 20 minutes cooking add the chopped chestnuts and the seasoning. The grated cheese can go in more towards the end, when the spelt is already nice and cooked al dente. Add more of any seasoning (or wine or cheese), if you feel that it's needed.
Then just serve warm and enjoy!