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Pumpkin Risotto with Crispy Prosciutto

Mariel here. This past Saturday, my husband and I traipsed on up to The Country with another friends-with-kids couple to go pumpkin picking. Somehow, despite the fact that our child is more petite than your average gourd and would rather swat at the stuffed birds in his “activity gym” than ogle real ones, we were certain he’d enjoy a day in the sunshine selecting his very first Jack o’ Lantern. Kids make memories at three months, right? He’ll thank us someday, I’m sure.

Even if the outing was entirely for the parents, we had a delightful time hanging out in Mother Nature. Let’s be honest, with a 14-week old, it’s just nice to get out and do anything. So while my little man probably won’t recall our glorious day trip, my husband and I can add it to the “aren’t we great parents” checklist we’ve started. It’s currently tacked up on the fridge…next to the three identical emergency contact lists I have posted.

As you’ve already guessed, this weekend’s pumpkin-patching inspired me to make this lovely autumnal risotto. Word to the baby-wise though…if your child’s naps are consistently cut short by the 45-Minute Intruder (I hate that guy!), make sure you have an extra pair of hands on deck to keep stirring the risotto whilst you tend to your sleep-proof charge.

PS: Self-congratulatory pat on the back…on Monday we hit our 1 MILLIONTH visitor here at Feast! If we were really organized…we’d have done a monster giveaway. But lately, we are not.

Pumpkin Risotto with Crispy Prosciutto
Serves 2 as an entree / Serves 4-5 as a starter
Adapted from a New York Times recipe

3-4 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable stock – stock
1 teaspoon olive oil – stock
¾-cup Vidalia onion, finely chopped – $0.89
1 large garlic clove, minced – stock
1 medium shallot, minced – $0.69
1 cup arborio rice – $2.69
½-cup dry white wine – stock
1/8-teaspoon ground ginger – stock
¼-teaspoon dried sage – stock
4 slices of prosciutto – $2.50
1 cup of pumpkin puree – $2.19
¼-cup freshly grated parmesan – $2.00
¼-teaspoon salt – stock
Lots of freshly ground black pepper (or to taste) – stock
Grand total assuming “well-stocked” kitchen: $10.96
Cost per starter-size serving: $2.19

1. In a large pot, heat the stock to a simmer and continue simmering throughout the course of preparation.

2. Heat a large skillet (preferably non stick) over high heat. Reduce to medium and add oil. Saute the onion, garlic and shallot, stirring frequently, until tender (about 5-7 minutes).

3. Stir in the rice, then add wine and cook until evaporated.

4. Add 1 cup of the simmering stock with the ginger and sage. Reduce heat to med-low so the risotto simmers. Stir frequently until most of the stock has absorbed. Repeat until rice is tender but slightly al dente.

5. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Spray a baking sheet with Pam and bake the prosciutto for 10 minutes, until crisp. Crumble and set aside.

6. Once the risotto’s texture is to your liking, stir in the pumpkin, parmesan, salt and pepper. Stir through and taste. Adjust seasonings and serve hot garnished with prosciutto crumbles.