Butternut Squash Risotto with Seared Scallops

I love Sundays. Recently, it’s been my fun food planning & cooking day. I usually spend about 2 hours planning my meals for the week. I search through blogs, my favorite websites, Pinterest (follow me!), Foodgawker, even Flickr. I grab my handy meal planning worksheet and a pencil and work my magic. I write down what meals I want to cook on those days and then fill in the shopping list. I cook Mondays-Thursdays. Fridays, Saturdays are too unpredictable to cook for, and the Mr. P, the Hubster likes to go out to eat. If we don’t have anything planned, I cook on Sundays too – usually my most elaborate meal if time permits. So the key for me is to make sure I can prep at least 2 meals for the week on Sunday. I also like to stick in an easy meal – usually sandwiches. Also, it’s great to make a little extra of stuff that can be frozen for next time. Stayed tuned for upcoming posts–for now, here is what I made on Sunday. Enjoy.

Butternut Squash Risotto with Seared Scallops


1 cup arborio rice
3 cups fat free low sodium chicken broth
1 half butternut squash or 1 cup butternut squash puree
3 cloves garlic, chopped
5 sage leaves, finely chopped
1 tsp butter
2 oz dry white wine
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
freshly ground pepper
1 tsp salt

For fresh butternut squash slice the squash down the middle the long way and scoop out all of the seeds.

Place flesh side down on a cookie sheet and then proceed to add water to the cookie sheet. It depends on the size of the cookie sheet, but typically 1 cup of water should do — enough to create a small pool around the squash halves.

Place in the oven at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until tender. With a spoon, scoop out all of the flesh – you’ll need about a cup for the risotto. Mash it up with the spoon.

In a sauce pan, heat chicken broth and squash puree (canned or fresh). Keep stock hot on a low heat.

Meanwhile, in another saucepan, heat the butter over low heat. Add the garlic and saute until golden.

Then add the  risotto and sage and stir well to coat each grain with butter and until the grains are slightly golden.

Add the wine and stir until it is absorbed.

Add salt and pepper and the stock a ladleful at a time, until it is absorbed before adding another ladleful stirring gently and almost constantly.

Continue this process until all the stock is used, about 25-30 minutes from the time you started.

When the risotto is almost done, start to prepare your scallops: Heat the oil in a heavy bottom skillet, over medium-high heat.

Season each scallop with salt and pepper. Sear the scallops  for 3-4 minutes on each side.

Go back to the risotto – when all the liquid is absorbed, stir in the grated cheese and remove from heat.

Place the risotto is a bowl and top with the scallops.

Then, serve immediately.





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