Like all risottos this is a bit of a labour of love, you just can’t drift off to another chore while it is cooking.
1 hour, 40 minutes
On a food safety note rice should never be reheated so this is not a dish that you should cook and reheat later. Don’t worry, the amazing smells from the kitchen will have them at the table before it is ready anyway.
Smoked streaky bacon rashers x 4
Arborio risotto rice- 1 handful per person.
Parmesan cheese- about an inch, finely grated
Half a pint of cream of some description, anything will do.
Half a glass of white wine- what you do with the other half is up to you.
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
Decent veg stock (Swiss marigold) made up to 1 pint.
Spinach-loads, it always takes more than you think.
Slice half the butternut squash into 2cm slices, peel and then chop the flesh into neat 2cm cubes. Place on a baking sheet, brush olive oil over them and put into a low over, gas 4, to gently roast. Remove when they are just tender when a sharp knife is stuck into them.
Chop the onion and bacon and fry gently in a small dollop of sunflower oil until cooked then chuck in the rice and the garlic and sweat it down for a minute on a low heat. Now the magic bit. Turn the heat up slightly and splash a small amount of white wine onto the rice, bacon and onion mix and stir well, it should make a sound like a sigh and bubble up. When the rice has more or less absorbed the wine then add another splash. Keep doing this until you have used up the wine then carry on doing it with the stock until the rice is just cooked. If you run out of stock use water. It should still have a bit of bite but be creamy and tender and not too wet, just enough liquid to keep it from catching. Season with pepper but be careful about adding more salt, both the bacon and the stock will be salty so always taste first.
Take the pan off the heat and stir in the cream and the parmesan. Put it back on a very low heat and stir until the cheese has melted and the whole thing is lovely and creamy. Chuck in the roasted butternut squash and the leaves and stir until the leaves are wilted. That’s it- serve and enjoy.