Sunday, December 30, 2007

Butternut Squash Risotto & Apple Scented Pork Chops

Mmmmmm, risotto and baked pork chops make for such a nice warm and hearty meal. Risotto is one of my favorite things to make. Everyone talks about how labor intensive it is, and how difficult... I don't get it. Sure, you can't walk away from it like a crockpot or baked dish in the oven, but I do all my cooking actively standing in the kitchen for at least 30 minutes most nights. So risotto ain't no thing to me! And hubby loves it too, which is an added bonus!

Pork, on the other hand, hubby does not like. He's not totally against it, but it is low on his favorites list and complains about it whenever I make it. So I only make it about 6 times a year. That's about the same amount we eat beef steaks. (We eat lots and lots of chicken and fish and pasta!) But I am off topic... I was in the mood for pork, so I declared we were having it. I thought a nice sweet dish would go well with the risotto.

Goodness it was good...

Butternut Squash Risotto

  • 2 Tbsp. Butter or Olive Oil
  • 1 or 2 Cloves of Garlic, minced
  • 2 Tbsp. Onion, finely chopped
  • 1 C. Arborio (Risotto) Rice
  • 1 C. White Wine
  • 3+ C. Chicken Broth, warmed
  • 1 C. Butternut Squash, cooked and cubed
  • 2-3 Tbsp. Parmesan Cheese, grated

  1. In a medium pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add in the garlic and onion and saute until delicious smelling!
  2. Stir in rice and coat with oil/ butter and let heat up, about 1 minute.
  3. Pour in white wine and stir, continuing over medium heat. The wine should start to bubble and soak into the rice. If you do not want to use wine, you may just use the equivalent amount of chicken broth.
  4. Add in 1/2 C. (or so) of chicken broth and stir. The broth should simmer and slowly soak into the rice. Stir every couple of minutes to make sure the rice is not burning and sticking on the bottom and to make sure there is enough liquid. Once most of the liquid is absorbed, add in another 1/2 C. and repeat the process.
  5. With around 1 C. of broth remaining, stir in the squash. As the rice finishes cooking, the squash should cook further, getting softer and breaking into tiny pieces with the rice. You will get a lovely orange color and the rice will almost be coated with the squash.
  6. Continue adding in the broth until the rice is thoroughly cooked through. If you need more broth to get a tender, al dente texture, add more in.
  7. Just before serving, stir in Parmesan cheese until melted.

Apple Scented Pork Chops
  • 2 Medium Pork Chops
  • 1 Apple, peeled, cored, and sliced
  • 1 Tbsp. Brown Sugar
  • 1 tsp. Cinnamon
  • 2 Tbsp. Apple Jack Brandy
  • 1 Tbsp Butter, cut into smaller pieces
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

  1. Salt and pepper both sides of the pork chops. Brown both sides in a hot pan on the stove top.
  2. Pre heat oven to 350 degrees.
  3. In a glass baking dish lined with foil, place apples slices along bottom of pan. Sprinkle with brown sugar, cinnamon, and butter.
  4. Place browned chops on top of apple slices and pour Apple Jack on top of everything.
  5. Bake uncovered in oven for about 45 minutes until pork reaches a temperature of 160 internally. Serve warm with cooked apple slices.


Peabody said...

That risotto looks great...I love all things butternut squash.

Punky said...

Erika - I made this meal for dinner tonight. It was fantastic!! I used regular brandy & it worked out well. Best pork chop I ever had - will be making this again. Also, I never made risotto before & followed your recipe. It was the perfect compliment to the meal. The Butternut broke up perfectly.

Thanks - I can't remember when I had such a great meal.

Can't wait to try more of your recipes. Thanks!