Pumpkin & chestnut risotto


1 tbsp olive oil

40 g/1 ½ oz pumpkin chopped

225 g/8 oz chestnuts, cooked and shelled (optional)

280 g/10 oz risotto rice

150 ml/5 fl oz vegetarian dry white wine

150 ml crumbled saffron threads (optional) dissolved in 4 tbsp of the stock

1 litre/1 ¾ pints simmering vegetable stock

85 g/3 oz freshly grated non dairy Parmesan style cheese, plus extra for serving

Salt and pepper (optional)


1. Heat the oil with 25g/1 oz of the butter in a deep saucepan over a medium heat until the butter has melted. Stir in the onion and pumpkin and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes, or until the onion is soft and starting to turn golden and the pumpkin is beginning to colour.

2. Roughly chop the chestnuts and add to the mixture. Stir thoroughly to coat.

3. Reduce the heat, add the rice and mix to coat in oil and butter. Cook stirring constantly, for 2-3 minutes, or until grains are translucent. Add the white wine and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minuets until it has reduced.

4.Add the saffron liquid to the rice, if using and cook, stirring constantly, until the liquid has been absorbed.

5.Gradually add the simmering stock, a ladleful at a time, stirring constantly. Add more liquid as the rice absorbs each addition. Increase the heat to medium so that the liquid bubbles. Cook for 20 minuets, or until the liquid has been absorbed and the rice is creamy. Season to taste with salt pepper, if using.

6. Remove from the heat and add the remaining butter and the cheese, stirring until melted. Sprinkle with cheese and serve.