Butternut Squash Risotto


3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided

1 medium butternut squash, halved and seeds removed

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

3 cups (680g) chicken or vegetable broth

5 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided

2 large or 3 small leeks, finely minced

1 garlic clove, minced

1 cup Cauliflower rice

½ cup dry white wine

½ cup Parmesan cheese, plus more for finishing

For the topping

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 large or 2 small leeks, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced

sea salt

For the Risotto

Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat it to 375.

Place 2 tablespoons olive oil on a baking sheet and spread it around to coat the tray evenly.

Place butternut squash halves cut side down on a baking sheet and move around to coat the cut surface well with oil.

Roast until squash is very tender, 40 to 45 minutes, then use tongs to gently turn squash over on the baking sheet.

Season with salt and pepper, then spoon any remaining oil in the pan over the squash.

Let squash cool until it’s easy to handle, then scoop the flesh into the bowl of a food processor.

Add broth and puree until smooth, then pour into a saucepan and keep warm (not simmering) over low heat.

In a medium saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon of butter with the remaining olive oil over medium heat.

Add minced leeks and cook until wilted and very soft, 4 minutes, then add garlic and cook until fragrant, 1 minute more.

Add cauliflower rice and cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute, then add white wine and bring to a simmer over medium-low heat, stirring frequently.

Add 1 cup of butternut-broth mixture to the cauliflower rice and cook, stirring frequently, until the broth is almost entirely absorbed.

Continue adding broth gradually (about ½ cup at a time), stirring frequently, until you have about ½ cup broth left and the cauliflower rice is tender, 20 to 25 minutes.

For the Toppings

While the risotto cooks, melt butter in a medium fry pan over medium heat, then add leeks and cook, stirring occasionally, until they are browned and starting to crisp, 9 to 11 minutes and season to taste with salt.

Stir final ½ cup broth into the risotto as needed, then stir the remaining 4 tablespoons butter and the Parmesan into the risotto until fully combined.

To serve, spoon risotto onto plates (if the risotto firmed up too much while the leeks cooked, add about ½ cup warm water and stir to loosen and make the mixture creamy again) and garnish each with the crispy leeks. Enjoy!
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