For the risotto

Optional toppings

  • drizzle of basil oil (shop bought or make your own - see tip)
  • 12 sage leaves, fried in olive oil until crisp
  • 2 tbsp hazelnuts
  • 3 sesame snaps, broken into pieces
  • 50g parmesan, finely grated
  • 1-2 tbsp balsamic glaze
  • 2 tbsp pumpkin seeds, toasted


  • STEP 1

    Heat oven to 220C/200C/gas 7. Spread the butternut squash out in an even layer over a roasting tray and drizzle with olive oil, nutmeg and season well with salt and black pepper. Roast for 35-40 mins or until soft and caramelised at the edges.

  • STEP 2

    While the squash roasts, put the chicken stock in a pan over a low heat and add 100ml boiling water. Keep the stock at a low simmer.

  • STEP 3

    Put the butter in a large, high sided sauté pan over a low heat and add the onion. Cook for 15 mins or until soft then add the crushed garlic and rice. Fry for 1-2 mins then pour in the wine and bring to a simmer. Cook until the wine has been absorbed into the rice then add a ladleful of the hot stock. Stir and cook until that has been absorbed before adding the next ladleful. Keep adding and stirring until all of the stock has been used up and the rice is glossy and tender – should take about 20mins.

  • STEP 4

    Add half of the grated parmesan, cover with a lid let the risotto rest for a few mins before stirring and piling into bowls.

  • STEP 5

    Top the risotto with the remaining parmesan and pieces of roasted squash plus all or some of the suggested toppings.


To make your own basil oil, put a large bunch of fresh basil (including the stalks) and a pinch of salt into a pan of boiling water. Wilt for 30 secs then scoop out with a slotted spoon into a blender or mini food processor. Add 100ml sunflower oil and blitz until smooth. Pour the mixture through a sieve lined with coffee filter paper or muslin into a bowl or jug until needed.

Goes well with


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