Take a stroll through a Farmers Market you will likely come across butternut squash at every turn. Take advantage of this seasonal powerhouse — not only is it comforting and delicious on a brisk Autumn day, it boasts a rich concentration of nutrients, dietary fiber, zinc, protein, folate and potassium.
In fact, beta-carotene, the antioxidant that gives butternut squash its beautiful orange color, along with vitamins A and C, support the natural function of the immune system, helping to prevent infections. Perhaps this is Mother Nature’s way of taking care of us going into cold and flu season!
Here is one of our favorite Fall recipes — creamy, plant-based, with just the right amount of crunch from toasted pumpkin seeds. We’re sure this will become one of your Autumn go-to’s.
Fall Butternut Squash Risotto
4 Tbsp. olive oil (divided)
2 cups diced butternut squash (or other winter squash)
1½ cups quartered cremini mushrooms
½ cup diced red onion
1 cup Arborio rice
4-5 cups vegetable stock, warmed in sauce pan
½ tsp. salt
freshly ground black pepper (to taste)
¼ cup toasted pumpkin seeds
¼ cup chopped parsley (garnish)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, combine the diced squash, 1 Tbsp. olive oil, and a pinch of salt. Spread the squash onto one of the baking sheets. Repeat the process with the mushrooms.
Place the trays into the oven to roast for 15-20 minutes (mushrooms) and 25-30 minutes (squash).
Meanwhile, rinse the rice in a fine mesh strainer under cold water. Drain well.
Heat 1 Tbsp. olive oil in a heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté for 5-6 minutes, or until translucent. Add the rice and stir to coat, cooking for one minute longer.
Add one cup of the warm stock and a pinch of salt, stirring constantly until the grain has absorbed all of the liquid. Continue to add the stock in ½ cup increments until the rice is cooked through and the grains are creamy.
Stir in the cooked squash and mushrooms. Season to taste with additional salt and pepper, as desired.
Garnish with pumpkin seeds and parsley, and serve warm.
Looking for more anti-inflammatory recipes? Check out our BlumKitchen Recipe Book. Our recipes are designed to reduce inflammation, support your thyroid, improve your liver’s detoxifciation function and heal your gut. Start cooking the Blum way today! Show Me Now
Meet Melissa: Melissa Rapoport is the Manager of Health Coaching and Lifestyle Programming at Blum Center for Health in Rye Brook, NY. She combines her graduate work in Developmental Psychology with her education in nutrition, health and coaching to create highly individualized programs that result in lifetime change. A contributing author to three international bestselling books, Melissa’s greatest joy is her relationship with her two daughters.