Okay, I was going to post about homemade pizza today, but I made something yummy last night, posted a picture and status about it on facebook and got a few requests to put up the recipe today, so here it is!

My new favorite cookbook! (from the mom-out-law)

Butternut Squash Risotto…. yummy!  I found a recipe in my new cookbook, showed it to the girlfriend and decided that, indeed, it had to be made. ASAP. I looked it over, made a few changes and set to work.

First off, I have to tell you about this cookbook. It’s awesome. Why is it awesome? Because each recipe inside comes with nutritional information! I can find out the PointsPlus per serving of every single recipe before I make it! Sweet mother of GOD! It’s the little things that make us happy, right? I highly recommend purchasing it!

Okay, back to the fooood. It was sweet and savory and we loved it. I did decide that I need a dutch oven, though. I had to cook mine in a pot and it took a bit longer. Probably about an hour an a half instead of just an hour. Do note, once this dish is done, it looks a bit… funny. The color of butternut squash and the texture of brown rice can make you raise an eyebrow or two, but DO NOT FEAR! Each bite is a bit of heaven! Why I tell you these things, I don’t know, but I figure I should at least be honest with you all! Sometimes you follow a recipe and the end result does NOT look like the picture in the book. Well, I’m not a five star chef or professional food photographer, but I do take pictures of the food I make and this dish made my eyebrow raise, lol. Nevertheless, try it! It was soooo creamy and tasty and a perfect side dish. At your request, here is….

Butternut Squash Risotto (slightly modified from Cooking Light)
Servings: 8 (2/3 cup per serving)
Points Per Serving: 6

Ingredients

  • 2 cups water, divided
  • 2 cans less-sodium chicken broth (or beef)
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped yellow onion
  • 3 cups (about 1 lb) cubed peeled butternut squash
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups brown rice (or another short grain rice)
  • 2 oz shaved Parmesan cheese (I bought a triangle block of it at Meijer. Very good!)
  • 3 tbsp light butter (I used the 50/50 o.o. blend. the book calls for unsalted butter)
  • 2 tsp dried parsley (the book calls for 2 tbsp fresh chopped)

Directions
1. Put 1 1/2 cups water and 2 cans chicken broth in a saucepan and simmer. Keep warm over low heat.

2. Heat oil in pot (or dutch oven if you have one!) over medium heat. Add onion and cook until golden. Make sure to keep stirring or it will burn.

3. Once golden, add remaining 1/2 cup water, squash, salt and pepper and cook for 10 minutes or until squash is tender and most of the water has evaporated. Note, the squash cooks down throughout the whole process, so if you still want to see chunks of the squash in the end, make sure to cut the squash into big cubes.

4. Once squash is tender, add in rice and stir until combined. Then stir in 1/2 cup broth mixture; cook until liquid is almost absorbed, stirring constantly (or it will stick to the bottom and burn).

5. Add remaining broth mixture 1/2 cup at a time, waiting to add the next until the liquid is nearly absorbed. This part took me about an hour. Brown rice takes longer to cook, so this is the lengthy part of the cooking. Remember to keep stirring.

6. Once you’re done with the broth mixture and the liquid is nearly absorbd, stir in cheese (save a little to top it off later), butter and parsley. Once it’s all melted, serve immediately and garnish with leftover cheese shavings!

Yummy yummy yummy in my tummy tummy tummy! I paired this with sweet and smokey chicken, which was made using a spice rub I got at a local shop called “Cheese and Crackers”. It wasn’t until after I’d spiced the chicken that I saw it had MSG in it. I was not a happy camper. That sh*t is BAD for you. I’ll be using that sparingly since I can’t return it! Other than that, the shop was really great, so you should check it out!