The natural sweetness of blue hubbard squash offsets the slightly bitter flavor of radicchio. Half-and-half adds to the creaminess of this main-dish risotto, but you can use milk as well. If you can't find blue hubbard, buttercup or butternut squash will work fine.
1 blue hubbard squash (about 4 pounds)
2 cups water
1 (14 1/2-ounce) can vegetable broth
2 1/2 cups sliced radicchio
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
1 1/2 teaspoons butter
1/2 cup finely diced onion
1 cup uncooked Arborio rice or other short-grain rice
1/4 cup dry white wine
2 tablespoons half-and-half or whole milk
1/2 cup (2 ounces) grated fresh Parmesan cheese
How to Make It
Preheat oven to 375°.
Cut squash in half lengthwise; discard the seeds and membrane. Place squash halves, cut sides down, on a baking sheet; bake at 375° for 50 minutes or until squash is tender. Cool. Peel squash; mash pulp. Set aside 1 cup pulp, reserving remaining pulp for another use.
Bring water and broth to a simmer in a large saucepan. Keep warm over low heat. Place a Dutch oven coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat until hot. Add radicchio to Dutch oven; sauté 2 minutes or until wilted. Place radicchio in a bowl. Sprinkle with 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Melt butter in Dutch oven. Add onion; sauté 3 minutes or until lightly browned. Add rice; sauté 1 minute. Stir in wine and 1/2 cup broth mixture; cook 3 minutes or until the liquid is nearly absorbed, stirring constantly. Add 2 cups broth mixture, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring constantly until each portion of liquid is absorbed before adding the next (about 15 minutes total). Stir in squash pulp. Repeat procedure with remaining 1 1/4 cups broth mixture (about 9 minutes total). Stir in radicchio mixture and half-and-half. Remove from heat; stir in cheese. Sprinkle with 1/8 teaspoon pepper.
Tasted like a fine restaurant. Rather than roasting the squash to a pulp, I cubed and roasted until lightly browned. When mixed in, it broke down just a little, offering a slight orange color. I also did not have radicchio so mixed in some chopped spinach at the end. I cannot wait to make it again.
This was SO good! Definitely restaurant quality. I didn't have any hubbard squash so I used butternut squash instead. When I made this, the 2 cups of water and 1 can of broth wasn't enough, so I doubled the broth and it came out perfect. The bitterness of the ridicchio paired with the sweetness from the squash was just amazing.
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