Thursday 27 March 2014

I Can Do All Things

I think not many Asians like risotto. It is mushy rice or half cooked rice to them especially when they are used to eating Asian style steamed or boiled rice all their life. The taste bud is not used to the flavour and texture of another type of rice, and this takes time  to adjust.

I remember my first taste of risotto at a Holiday Inn hotel in Rome some thirty years ago. I nearly spat the first spoonful out. I thought it was yucky at that time. I couldn't finish my meal. I also had my first best ministrone and seafood spaghetti there. Back then, those were the two Italian food I usually order. I was very young then and was not adventurous with food.

Now, cook me a risotto anytime and I thank you for it. Risotto is cooked creamy, and not mushy from the liquid absorption of the large grain. You cannot make a risotto using long grain rice, for the flavour and texture will be different.
This is a modified Ina Garten's butternut risotto with saffron,  a risotto alla Milanese  style using saffron.
I cooked one serve with grilled prawns.

Butternut Risotto with Grilled Prawns
Ina Garten
serves 4-6


1 butternut squash 250g
2 tbsp olive oil 1/2 tbsp
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade 300ml vegetable stock
6 tablespoon unsalted butter 20gms
2 ounces pancetta, diced 
1/2 cups minced shallots (2 large) 2 small shallots
1 1/2 cups arborio rice (10 ounces) 1/3 cup
1/2 cup dry white wine 50ml
1 teaspoon saffron thread, a pinch
2 tablespoons grated Butternut squash
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, scatter
4 large grey prawns, shelled and deveined


  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. 
  • Peel the butternut squash, remove the seeds, and cut it into 3/4 inch cubes. You should have about 6 cups. Place the squash on a sheet pan and toss it with the olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1.2 tsp pepper.(salt and pepper to taste) Roast for 25 to 30 minutes, tossing once, until very tender. Set aside. 
  • Meanwhile heat the chicken stock in a small covered saucepan. Leave it on low heat to simmer.
  • In a heavy bottomed pot or Dutch pan, melt the butter and saute the pancetta and shallots on medium-low heat for 10 minutes, until the shallots are translucent but not browned. Add the rice and stir to coat the grains with butter. Add the wine and cook for 2 minutes. Add 2 full ladles of stock to the rice plus saffron, 1 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp pepper.(salt and pepper to taste) Stir, and simmer until the stock is absorbed, 5 to 10 minutes. Continue to add the stock, (add in grated squash), 2 ladles at a time (1 ladle), stirring every few minutes. Each time, cook until the mixture seems a little dry, then add more stock. Continue until the rice is cooked through, but still al dente, about 30 minutes total. Off the heat, add the roasted squash cubes and Parmesan cheese. Mix well and serve.Serve with grilled prawns

Grilled Prawns

Shelled and deveined prawns. Add a little olive oil, salt and pepper. Grilled on hot pan till cooked.

Linking this post to Cook Like A Star "All Stars Anniversary" organised by Joyce from Kitchen Flavours,
Mich from Piece of Cake and Zoe from Bake for Happy Kids.
This is also linked to Little thumbs up "Prawns" hosted by Food Playground, organised by Bake for Happy Kids and My little Favourite DIY

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me Phillipians 4:13


  1. The presentations in the photos, as well as your descriptions, are very appealing. Thank you so much for sharing.

  2. Hi Lian,

    We like risotto! Maybe the restaurant serving you your first risotto is not cooking that particular one very well... but your Ina's inspired ones look really good.


    1. I wasn't used to risotto then, very suaku. The cooking was very good and authentic.

  3. Whatever you cooked is yummy to me,Lian

  4. Hi Lian,
    I thank you for sharing your first experience towards risotto.
    I think when we are young we didn't know how to be adventurous
    I never try risotto but I would like to try soon with this recipe you shared.

    Thanks again for sharing this wonderful dish to LTU!

    1. Hi Mui Mui, try and see if you like it :))

  5. Hi Lian,
    Your risottto looks delicious! I have never tried risotto and have bought some arborio rice, but have not attempt it yet. Hopefully soon!

  6. Hi Lian, the first pic itself is so beautiful and tempting. Thanks for sharing your risotto recipe. You have a wonderful weekend ahead and cheers :)

    1. Thanks Ivy for your dropping your comment here.

  7. oh boy that would be nice for dinner.

  8. Hi Lian, I love risotto very much and so does my kids. Our fav version is with scallops. I like your saffron infused version.

  9. complimenti hai un blog molto bello e interessante !!!!

  10. I am not a rice person but I like risotto and eat it whenever it is served…your version looks absolutely delicious! I'll safe the prawns for last:D THey are the star of this dish!

    1. hi Jeannie, Thanks for your comment. Think I am wrong to say not many Asians like risotto. haha...

  11. Hi Lian,
    Looks absolutely yummilicious! I love risotto :) By the way, I have been browsing your recipes for an upcoming Spring event.
    Thank you for sharing!

  12. Wow your risotto looks so enticing! Wish I could try some.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...