Califonia Bountiful
Side Dish

Winter squash risotto with chanterelle mushrooms

This hearty, yet healthy dish by Sacramento chef Kurt Spataro is delicious by itself or as an accompaniment to roasted meats or grilled seafood.

Courtesy of California Rice Commission

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1 1/2 tbsp. olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 1/2 cups California Koshihikari or other short-grain rice
1/4 cup dry white wine
8 cups chicken stock, brought to a simmer
Salt and pepper, to taste
4 oz. chanterelle mushrooms, cleaned and quartered
5 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened, divided use
2 cups winter squash, cut into 1/4-inch dice, blanched in chicken stock
1/2 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano
3 sage leaves, finely chopped


Heat olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Sauté onion until soft, about 8 to 10 minutes. Add rice and stir to evenly coat grains with oil. Add wine and cook until pan is almost dry.

Reduce heat to low and begin adding hot stock, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring constantly. Continue cooking, keeping stock just above the surface of the rice. Season with salt.

Meanwhile, sauté mushrooms in 1 tbsp. butter until just tender. Season with salt and pepper and add to rice with cooked squash. When rice is just tender, add remaining butter and cheese and stir vigorously with a wooden spoon. Check seasoning and serve in shallow bowls with additional cheese. Garnish with sage.

Tip: If you like your rice soft, soak it before cooking.

Serves 4

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