This meal is so great because it will satisfy a 7 month old, a 7 year old or a 70 year old! The beautiful acorn squash is roasted and adds a great texture and flavor to this Fall risotto. Risotto does require your attention, so any of you with little ones you might want to wait until naptime to make this – then slowly reheat it for dinner. Or wait until your partner is able to play with the little ones while you cook your heart out!
- 2 Acorn Squash
- 1 tablespoon Olive Oil
- 1 Onion, finely diced *
- 1 Shallot, diced *
- 2 Cloves Garlic, diced *
- 2 cups Arborio Rice
- 1 quart Vegetable Stock (homemade if possible, otherwise select an all natural, low sodium, no MSG stock)
- 1 cup Water
- Salt and Pepper
- Nutmeg, freshly grated
- 1 tablespoon Butter
- 4 fresh Sage Leaves, diced
- 1 cup Parmesan Cheese
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Cut each acorn squash in half lengthwise. Using a spoon scoop out the seeds and goop. Place 3 of the squash halves cut side down on a lightly greased baking sheet. Peel and chop the remaining half and add to baking sheet. This step isn’t absolutely necessary if you don’t have time but it’s nice because it adds some different texture to the risotto.
Roast for about 15 to 20 minutes or until the flesh is tender. Make sure to stir the chopped squash halfway through. Once the squash has cooled a bit scoop out the flesh and either puree or chop. If your baby hasn’t been introduced to squash yet then stop here and take out a portion or two for your baby’s meal.
In a medium saucepan heat the veggie stock and water to a very slow simmer. Meanwhile in a large saucepan or dutch oven add olive oil and heat to medium high. Add the onions, shallots and garlic and saute until soft about 2 minutes. Add the rice and cook for 2 minutes. Now is the time to pay attention folks! Both hands are required for the rest of the cooking process, set down your baby, turn up the music and focus. Add the stock and water mixture one ladle full at a time to the rice mixture. Stir the rice mixture constantly until the liquid is absorbed. Allow the liquids to evaporate each time before adding another ladle full of the stock.
Once about half of the liquid has been added stir in the pureed and chopped squash, continue to simmer adding the liquid a ladle full at a time until all liquid has been absorbed. At this point you can take out a portion for your baby or child(ren), if your baby is not ready for this texture yet you can always puree the risotto.
* If your baby has not yet been introduced to these flavorings, onions, shallots, or garlic you can omit them from the recipe. Or try adding just the onions or just the garlic, etc.