Butternut Squash Risotto with Shrimp and Roasted Vegetables

Did you ever have a restaurant meal that was so delicious you were inspired to recreate it at home?  This is one of those meals, after just one taste I knew that I had to make it myself!  An elegant dinner for two, it is both comfort food and fine dining rolled into one!  The steps are easy to follow and the results are impressive.  It’s a bit time consuming for a week night, but you can speed things up by making the risotto ahead of time.  I also used a bit of  butternut squash left over from another meal, and for a special garnish, I toasted a few pumpkin seeds.

Dinner for 2 ????

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Ingredients:

  • 1 dozen large raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1/4 cup frozen peas, thawed
  • 1/2 medium cauliflower, chopped into uniform pieces
  • 1/3 cup pureed butternut squash (reserved from another meal)
  • 1 cup cooked risotto, (see basic preparation here)
  • Old Bay® seasoning
  • 2 tbsp. butter, divided
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/3 cups gluten free chicken broth, or more as needed
  • 1 tbsp. pumpkin seeds for garnish

Preparation:

Chop the cauliflower into uniform size pieces, about 1-1/4″.  Rinse, toss with 1 tbsp. olive oil, and season with Old Bay.  Roast at 425º for 20 minutes.  You should see some browning around the edges.

Heat a cast iron braiser pan or heavy skillet with 1 tbsp. butter.  Add the shrimp and peas, and sprinkle with Old Bay.

Cook the shrimp for several minutes, just until they turn pink.

Add the roasted cauliflower to the skillet.

Warm the cooked risotto in a small sauce pan with the remaining 1 tbsp. of butter, then stir in the butternut squash puree.  If it’s too thick add 1/3 cup chicken broth.

To plate, make a bed of risotto and top with the shrimp and veggies.  Garnish with a few pumpkin seeds.

Isn’t that beautiful?  What a great meal for date night. ????  I think it was even better than the restaurant version!  If you’re hesitant about making risotto be sure to give my Basic Risotto recipe a quick read.  It’s easy and you’ll be an expert in no time!

Originally posted 9/08/2019                                               Updated 2/03/2022

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Butternut Squash and Pear Soup

How many soup recipes can you prepare in under an hour?  Well here’s one that you will want to pin for the holidays!  It’s elegant enough for your Thanksgiving table and quick enough to prepare after work.  The butternut squash and pear combo is complemented by just the right amount of onion and garlic, the perfect balance of sweet and savory.  Celebrate the season with a comforting bowl of soup that is good for you!

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About 6 Servings 

Ingredients:

  • 32 oz. carton (4 cups) gluten free chicken broth
  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. butter
  • 1 cup onion, diced
  • 1/4 tsp. turmeric
  • 1 tbsp. grated fresh ginger (or 1/2 tsp. powdered)
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • fresh ground pepper to taste (about 1/2 tsp.)
  • 1 medium butternut squash, peeled and cubed (about 4 cups)
  • 2 pears (I used Bosc), peeled and cubed
  • 1/2 tbsp. gluten free Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp. sugar
  • 1/2 cup half & half (optional)

Preparation:

In a Dutch oven or 4-quart stock pot, sauté the onions and garlic in olive oil and butter.  Add the remaining ingredients through sugar, and simmer until the squash is soft.

Remove from heat and puree with a stick blender.  If you like, stir in a drizzle of half & half for a smooth, creamy finish.

That’s it!  Serve with a simple garnish of fresh herbs.  So pretty and festive.

Special thanks to my cousin Donna for this recipe that has become a holiday tradition

Notes ♪♫  Most of the ingredients in this recipe are naturally gluten free.  I used Swanson brand chicken broth, and Lea and Perrins Worcestershire sauce.

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Apple Walnut Butternut Squash

Butternut squash and apple pair beautifully in this easy autumn side dish.  Pretty enough for your holiday table, it is delicious and dare I say healthy?

 3-4 servings

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 butternut squash, peeled and cubed
  • 1 apple, peeled and diced
  • 2 tbsp. chopped walnuts
  • 1 tbsp. brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp. butter, divided
  • cinnamon

 

Preparation:

Toast the walnuts in a dry skillet.  Be careful not to burn the nuts, 2-3 minutes should do it.  Remove from the skillet and set aside.

Peel and dice the apple.  Add 1 tbsp. butter to the skillet and sauté the apples for 2-3 minutes.  Remove from heat.

Steam the butternut squash until tender, then puree with a stick blender.  Stir in the remaining tbsp. of butter and brown sugar.

Place the squash in a serving bowl.  Top with the diced apples and the toasted walnuts.  Sprinkle with cinnamon and serve!

Notes: ♪♫ Speed up prep time by purchasing peeled and cubed butternut squash, it’s usually available this time of year.

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