Rainy days are bittersweet- While I love the sound and smell of rain, I hate the ‘gloom’ it imposes on a day as well as your predetermined fate to get completely and utterly soaked.
I met L. at the market and we proceeded to get the necessary ingredients for a special meal I had been thinking of all day…. Butternut Squash Risotto. I took the ‘easy’ way out and bought a can of organic butternut squash—in my opinion, it is worth every penny.
Upon returning home, I finished up my work for the day and set to work on preparing our festive dish. First, however, I prepared the batter for the much anticipated dessert (it needed to be refrigerated for 1hr).I don’t make dessert that often- mostly for lack of time, but also because I don’t need homemade baked goods around every corner.
Madeleines are one of my favorite cookies. I purchased my Madeleine pan as a Christmas gift to myself last year—I tell you, it doesn’t take much to make me happy J
Madeleines are a traditional French cookie. They are light, airy, and buttery…a truly sophisticated cookie.
Upon purchasing my pan, I used a recipe that was, to be honest, very difficult. So, when I found a recipe on the lovely Gillian’s blog ( a must read!) for Nutella Madeleines, I knew I had to try it at once! She did go through all the trouble of translating the recipes from French to English, after all. :)
This recipe did not dissapoint…these cookies fit all the charactaristics of true Madeleines. I will defninitely be adding these to my holiday repertoire. They are best right out of the oven, so plan accordingly. I believe storing them in an airtight container and serving with tea would do just fine, if immediate serving is not possible.
Now, back to the Risotto! Risotto, while simple to make, is a bit time consuming. Definitely not a ‘set it and forget it’ type deal. Unless, of course, you’re going for the ‘charred’ taste. ;)
The following recipe is based on a great staple recipe for Lemon Risotto with Tempeh from the Cooking Light Magazine. I made a few alterations… enjoy!
Butternut Squash Risotto with Maple Glazed Tempeh
1 8 oz pkg. of tempeh
~2 T maple syrup (or maple/agave blend ß I used this)
~1 T olive oil
2 T olive oil
1 shallot, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 ½ c. Arborio rice (I used a mix of brown rice and white)
1 c. white wine ( I used “3 buck chuck” chardonnay)
4-5 c. chicken broth
½ can butternut squash puree
½ c. grated parmesan cheese
This is what I did:
Place tempeh in a baking dish and drizzle maple syrup and olive oil over top. Sprinkle with salt and place in a 375 degree oven. (30 minutes)
This is what I should have done:
Coat tempeh in maple syrup. And season with salt. Coat the bottom of a heavy pan with olive oil. Saute until heated through. <– :)
Heat olive oil and butter over medium heat. Add shallot and garlic and cook for 2-3 minutes.
Add rice cook for 1 minute (stirring constantly).
Add wine and stir until absorbed.
Add ½ c. broth and stir until absorbed… repeat this process until rice is cooked (4-5 c. broth, 20-25 minutes).
Stir in butternut squash puree. Remove from heat and add cheese.
Top with tempeh.
Do as I say, not as I do… the tempeh was waaaaay to hard. So definitely do it on the stove top. Otherwise, the risotto was remarkable. A perfect, savory Fall dish.
Oh, and let’s not forget a prefect dessert to follow.
A great meal is the best remedy to a gloomy, rainy day.