- .5 lbs. arborio rice
- .5 lbs. butternut squash 1/4 inch diced and skinned
- .5 stick of butter
- 2 cloves garlic
- 3 cups hot chicken or vegetable stock
- 2 stems of rosemary
- 5 leaves of spinach (10 for baby spinach)
- .25 cup parmesan cheese
- 1 tblsp. toasted pine nuts
- .5 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 6 U-10 scallops (per person)
- salt and pepper to taste
1. In a sauce pan put one tablespoon of butter and let it melt. Then add the garlic just until you start to smell it and then immediately add the butternut squash. Sauté these for about 30 seconds and then add the Arborio rice. Stir this until the grain is half-way translucent.
2. At this stage the rice is ready for the stock. Pour one cup at a time and stir continuously for about 18 minutes. Depending on when the grain was harvested, the liquid ratio will very. You may need a cup less of stock, or you may even need to add a cup. Once the risotto has cooked for the 18 minutes then it should have a slight crunch to it. If you want to cook it a bit more, that is fine. Right before serving this dish you want to fold in about a tablespoon of butter to add a creamy texture to the dish. If you do not want to use butter you can use olive oil. *Do not add the butter or oil until you are ready to serve the dish.
3. Take the two stems of rosemary and remove the leaves from it but just leave about a 1/2 inch of leaves on the top. The rosemary stem will act as a skewer for the scallops. Skewer the scallop with the rosemary and put aside for later.
4. Combine in a blender the rosemary leaves, spinach, parmesan cheese, toasted pine nuts, and extra virgin olive oil. Mix on high for about 3 to 4 minutes. After mixing, let it set for about an hour in a warm place. This will help the oil separate from the pesto mixture. Because you only want to utilize the oil, save the pulp for a day that you want pasta or even to marinade chicken or steak.
5. Put a sauté pan on the burner with a little scoop of butter and let the pan get really hot. Once the pan is just starting to smoke, season your scallops with salt and pepper then place in the pan. Let each side cook until a golden brown.
6. Now that all the components are done you reheat the risotto and add the butter. Enjoy!!!
This recipe is courtesy of the Local Food Project at Airlie, Virginia.