In the great words of one of my favourite authors, this was “scrumdiddilyumtious”! Roald Dahl is one of my heroes. I thought one day I would grow out of loving his writing, but I never did. He has taught me such amazing lessons with his lovely, made-up words and his preposterous ideas that might only make sense to a child.
Why am I talking about a book instead of a recipe? Well, I was packing my apartment today and donating things I have no use for, when I stumbled on my beloved collection of Roald Dahl books. I sat there reading and laughing (instead of packing) for hours until I realized how unproductive I was being! My favourite novels of his are: Matilda, The Twits and The BFG. So, I decide to keep those three and part with the rest. I like to think that some other child (or wonderful adult) will find the joy I did while reading these books.
Packing is dreadful, though. It has to be one of my least favourite things and I have done it at least once a year for the past four years. I keep telling myself, “Okay, this will be where I will stay for a while”. However, I inevitably find somewhere else and the journey continues.
Anywhoozels, enough rambling and on to the recipe!
This recipe was a brain child of mine. I thought about what to make for Easter dinner for days. I wanted to make something that would satisfy everyone’s pallet. I woke up Easter morning and this idea was born. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
For people who eat cheese, try adding parmesan or mozzarella. For people with nut allergies, don’t add the crushed walnuts. I promise it won’t ruin the dish.
Scrumptious Stuffed Squash with Lemon Risotto
2 butternut squash
1 cup coconut milk
2 cups arborio rice
5 cups vegetable broth, boiled
1 1/2 cup asparagus, chopped
1 tbsp of lemon zest
1 small yellow onion
4 cloves garlic
1 cup mushrooms, diced
2 tbsp of olive oil or earth balance butter (I used olive oil)
Salt to taste
“Daiya” shredded cheese (optional)
1/4 cup ground walnuts (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Cut the butternut squash in half and scoop out the seeds. Once the oven has preheated, put squash on the bottom rack face down for about 25 minutes or until squash is tender.
- While squash is cooking, put broth in a medium sauce pan and bring to a boil.
- In a large sauce pan heat oil or butter on medium high heat. Add garlic, onions, and mushrooms and sauté until onions are translucent.
- Add rice and mix. The rice will become translucent as well. This should only take a couple of minutes.
- Begin to add broth with a ladle, but only add one scoop at a time. Wait until broth has evaporated before adding more liquid. This will take about 20 minutes, stirring constantly.
- Add in asparagus and lemon zest while rice is still al dente and allow to cook for another few minutes longer. If you don’t need all the broth, that is okay. You don’t want your rice to get mushy. It will throw off the consistency of the dish.
- Take squash out of the oven and scoop out the centre leaving about an inch and a half around the edges. Don’t throw out the centre because you can use it in another recipe! Pour risotto into the squash, topping with cheese and/or ground walnuts. Turn on broiler on low and place stuffed squash on the middle rack. Keep a close eye on it and remove when cheese has melted and walnuts have toasted.
- You have created a masterpiece! Dig in!