Temperatures make it a little hard to tell, but summer is wrapping up in Austin. We picked up what I am sure is going to be our last watermelon of the year with our tuber-heavy CSA stash. In the kitchen, I am closing out the summer with one last batch of my summer squash risotto.
I originally came across this risotto cooking method in The Bon Apetit Fast Easy Fresh cookbook. I’ve been making risotto this way for so long now that I can’t even remember how I used to make it. There is very little stirring (just enough to keep it from sticking) and it comes together so quickly that it is a no-brainer, go-to when I get home from the market on Saturday with a bundle of summer squash. Great for a when you want to add a little more substance to a salad dinner on a weeknight, too.
Summer Squash Risotto
1 yellow summer squash or medium zucchini, grated
½ yellow onion, finely diced
3 tablespoons of olive oil
¾ cup arborio rice
3 cups vegetable broth (or water)
salt and pepper to taste
- Melt butter or warm olive oil in a large saucepan.
- Add diced onion and grated squash. Cook for a few minutes until onion and zucchini start to soften.
- Add arborio rice, stir until grains are well coated, and cook for a few more minutes.
- Add broth and bring to a boil (note: I like to use leek broth if I have it on hand, but any vegetable broth or water works).
- Season with salt.
- Lower heat to medium low and stir risotto occasionally to keep from sticking to bottom of pot.
- Cook until liquid has reduced and rice is nice and creamy. About 15-20 minutes depending on temp of your stove.
- Top individual servings with freshly grated parmesan and pepper if you’d like.
You can substitute butter for the olive oil and replace a ½ cup liquid with heavy cream if you’d like, but I find that the grated summer squash turns almost buttery (think zucchini butter) adding a creaminess without having to pile on any dairy.