Vegan Butternut Squash, Chestnuts and Dill Risotto

Vegan Butternut Squash, Chestnuts and Dill Risotto

Chestnuts roasting on an open fire, jack frost nipping at your nose. And yes, I did sing this song while I was cooking this meal. I have never cooked chestnuts before so I was really interested to see how they tasted. When I was a children we used to visit a fireworks display in our local town and there would always be a stall selling them. I remember eating them at this time but we never ate them at any other time of the year. The chestnuts I ate were always quite sweet and chewy.

Recently I visited our local wholesalers and this year they were selling chestnuts. I decided to try cooking these beauties. When I brought them I wasn’t entirely sure what I would cook these nuts with. I knew that they were sweet when roasted so I wasn’t sure whether to cook them in a cake or a savoury dish.

Then it was one of those nights when I didn’t really have a plan for dinner. I noticed the butternut squash and dill in the fridge. That was it, risotto or pasta I thought. Without to much effort our dinner was born like Jesus on Christmas day. It was amazing and so tasty. It’s a meal I would eat all year round. We really enjoyed this dish and we hope you do too.

Have you ever tired chestnuts and if so what have you eaten them with? Let me know in the comments below and please don’t forget to like and follow me.

Equipment

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  • Leek x 1
  • Butternut squash x 1 large
  • Chestnuts x 2 large handfuls
  • Vegetable or chicken stock x 200mls
  • Cream cheese or cashew nut cream cheese x 4 tbsp (optional)
  • Nutritional yeast x 4 tbsps
  • Dill x 1 large handful
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • Rice x 200g

Method

  • Preheat the oven to 200ºC.
  • Add the baking tray to the oven while it is preheating.
  • Peel the butternut squash and cut into bit size pieces.
  • Cut the ends off the leek, peel off its dry skin and chop it into large chunks. 
  • Remove the preheated baking tray from the oven with oven gloves.
  • Put the chopped leek, butternut squash and chestnuts into the tray.
  • Drizzle over the olive oil and add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Place back in the oven for 30 – 40 minutes.
  • Once the outside has started to brown, remove from the oven and leave to cool.
  • When the vegetables have cooled, remove a few pieces of the butternut squash and chestnuts to use as a garnish later.
  • Once cool, place the baking tray ingredients into the food processor, along with the dill.
  • Blend the ingredients together.
  • While it’s blending, add the chicken stock gradually and check it’s at a consistency you like.
  • Add more salt and pepper to taste, if required.
  • Set aside and boil the rice in the saucepan along with a pinch of salt.
  • Pour the sauce into the other saucepan and leave on a gentle heat while the rice cooks.
  • Finally once the rice has cooked add it to the sauce, serve and garnish with the butternut squash and chestnut pieces.
Vegan Butternut Squash, Chestnuts and Dill Risotto

Vegan Buttersquash, Chestnuts and Dill Risotto was a big hit with my son Ted. My husband Howard wasn’t here to eat this dish. Ted was at home and he told me while eating the meal that it was delicious. I did have to stop. Ted is a very difficult diner to serve at times. This was huge for Ted and I was really pleased he was enjoying it. The sauce could be made in advance of a meal and frozen. Also, you could make extra and freeze it for another meal. It was a sweet, nutty risotto that Ted and I both enjoyed. However you decide to eat this dish, as always, please enjoy. Thank you xxx