We’re in the thick of Fall here in Southern California, though it doesn’t really feel like it. We just had a 90°F high today, and my tomato plants are still surviving!
I’ve been waiting and waiting for some baking pumpkins to arrive at the grocery/farmers market, and that day finally came last week! The instant I got them home, I flipped the oven to 375F, cut them in half, scooped the seeds, and baked them on a cookie sheet with a Silpat and water bath covered with foil for an hour & 30. I let them cool, scooped the flesh into a bowl, and bust out the immersion blender, and blended until smooth. Now, the pumpkin purée is jarred up and in the fridge, ready for anything I want to throw at it.
It’s first application is this Pumpkin Risotto.
The risotto itself is made with a mixture of sautéed onions, and a liquid that is comprised of pumpkin purée, pumpkin beer, and vegetable stock. I added in some sautéed mushrooms for a little more earthiness and texture.
You could stop there, and leave this a completely vegan meal, but for the more carnivorous types, I braised some short ribs in a chocolate/coffee stout and chipotle liquid. Earthy, spicy, a tad bitter, and herbaceous. This meal is super-satisfying and perfect for Fall and Halloween festivities!
What is your favorite pumpkin recipe?
- Serves: 4
- Serving size: ⅔ Cup Risotto
- 3 Pounds Short Ribs, trimmed of most of the fat
- 2 Tablespoons Lemon Juice
- ½ Teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
- 2 Tablespoon Canola Oil
- 1 Cup Sliced Onions
- 3 Cloves Garlic, Roughly Chopped
- 1 Teaspoon Cocoa Powder
- 1½ Cups Beef or Veggie Broth
- 1 Tablespoon Molasses
- 1 Cup Porter or Stout with Coffee and/or Chocolate characteristics
- ¼ Cup Coffee
- ¼ Cup Water
- 2 Teaspoons Freshly Grated Ginger
- 1 Tablespoon Sugar
- 2 Tablespoon Tamari or Soy Sauce
- 1 Tablespoon Spicy Brown Porter Mustard (any dijon or whole grain mustard will work, just not the Frenches yellow mustard type)
- 2 Chipotle Peppers in Adobo, finely diced
- 1 Tablespoon Butter/Olive Oil
- 1 Teaspoon Fresh Thyme
- 1 Teaspoon Fresh Sage
- 8 Ounces (1 package) Baby Bella or Crimini Mushrooms, sliced
- 1 Tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- ½ Cup Chopped Onion
- 1 Cup Arborio Rice
- 1 Cup Pumpkin Puree
- 1 Cup Pumpkin Beer
- 1 Cup Veggie Stock
- 1 Teaspoon Sea Salt
- ¼ Teaspoon Pepper
- Place the short ribs in a freezer bag, sprinkle with cayenne pepper, and drizzle with lemon juice. Seal and marinate in refrigerator for at least four hours or overnight, squishing the bag every so often to re-distribute the lemon juice and spice.
- After they are done marinating, remove from the bag, and pat dry.
- Heat the oven to 375F.
- Heat a skillet to medium-high heat, then add the canola oil. Sear the short ribs on all sides, and reserve to a platter.
- Turn heat down to medium, then add the onions, stirring frequently for about 5 minutes, or until translucent. Add the garlic, and cook for one minute more.
- Add in the cocoa powder, and stir until the onions are coated. Then add the veggie broth to deglaze the pan, stirring and scraping the good bits off the bottom of the skillet. Add the molasses and stir until incorporated, then add in the beer, coffee, water, ginger, sugar, tamari, chipotle and mustard. Mix well.
- Return the seared short ribs to the liquid in the dutch oven, or place the liquid and ribs in an oven safe dish with a lid.
- Place the dutch oven in the oven and cook for 2-3 hours, or until the ribs are very tender.
- Remove the ribs from the liquid mixture, and allow them to cool. Place the dutch oven on the stove over medium-low heat, and reduce the liquid by half, about 30 minutes.
- When the ribs are cool enough to handle, remove the meat from the bones and the fatty tissue, set aside.
- When the liquid is reduced, return the shredded meat to the liquid. Keep warm until the risotto is ready.
- In a skillet over medium heat, add the butter and mushrooms, cooking until the mushrooms are browned, about 10 minutes.
- Add in the sage and thyme, and cook for 1 minute more. Remove from heat, and reserve.
- Mix the pumpkin purée, beer, and veggie stock in a pot, and set over low heat, keeping a ladle handy.
- Add the olive oil and onion to a different pot over medium heat, and let the onions sweat for about ten minutes, stirring frequently.
- Add in the rice, and toss to coat, letting them toast for about 5 minutes. Stir frequently to avoid burning the rice.
- Add one cup of the pumpkin/beer/stock liquid, and stir frequently until most of the liquid is gone.
- Then, repeat with more liquid in half cup increments, continuing to stir frequently, until the liquid is almost gone.
- When you have used half of the liquid, add in the salt, pepper, and mushroom mixture to the rice.
- Keep adding the liquid, a half cup at a time, until the rice is al-dente(still has a bite to it), and the mixture has a creamy consistency.
- Portion the rice into four shallow bowls.
- Using a pair of tongs, remove the shredded short rib from its sauce, and top each bowl with the desired amount.
- Garnish with fresh thyme leaves and enjoy!