By Loretta Paganini
1 (2 lb.) butternut squash
3 Tbsp. olive oil
2 Tbsp. butter
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 shallot, finely diced
1/2 cup dry white wine
2 cups Arborio rice
4 cups chicken stock
2 Tbsp. parmesan cheese, freshly grated
1/4 cup crumbled gorgonzola cheese
Salt and pepper
2 oz. diced pancetta
1/2 cup walnut pieces, toasted
Remove the top and bottom of the squash. Peel away the skin, cut in half lengthwise, remove the seeds and cut the flesh into 1/2-inch dice. Repeat process with the other piece.
Place on a large baking sheet, drizzle with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Mix well and cook in a preheated oven at 350°F for 15 minutes, until soft and slightly browned.
Add the remaining olive oil to a heavy sauté pan and brown the pancetta. Add the butter, garlic and shallots and sauté gently for 3 minutes, until softened but not colored.
Add the rice and stir well to coat the grains with the oil and butter. Add the wine and deglaze the pan for about 2 minutes or until the alcohol has evaporated. Add the hot stock a ladle-full at a time, stirring until each addition is absorbed into the rice. Keep rice covered with liquid at all times. Continue adding stock in this way, cooking until the rice is creamy but the grains are still firm. This should take about 20 minutes.
Remove the squash from the oven; add to the risotto with the parmesan and remaining butter.
Remove from heat and stir in Gorgonzola and walnuts. Season to taste with salt and pepper and stir gently. Serve immediately.