Friday, September 6, 2013

Courgette Risotto

Risotto is one of my top comfort foods and for us is usually made with courgettes (zucchini) or oven-roasted squash/pumpkin (and if you read yesterday’s post you’ll know squash is going to feature regularly on our autumn menus). I have to confess that I’d rather eat a good risotto than a deep fried courgette flower – I am a foodie, but I’m a comfort foodie. The bacon, courgette, garlic and basil flavours in this recipe are fantastic and the rich, creaminess of the risotto makes me salivate every time I cook it. If you would like to give it a go here is the recipe;

french village diaries roasted squash recipe food
Roasted squash

Courgette (Zucchini) and Basil Risotto

4 tbsp basil olive oil or a knob of butter
3 courgettes, diced
1 pack of lardons or streaky bacon
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
200g Arborio (risotto) rice
1 small glass of dry white wine
1.5l chicken stock, simmering
1 tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Handful of fresh basil

Heat half the oil or butter over a high heat. Add the courgettes and bacon and cook until lightly golden. Stir in the garlic and cook for 30 seconds longer. Transfer to a plate. If using squash, oven roast with the garlic and cook the bacon in a pan then combine.

Heat the remaining buter/oil over a medium heat. Add the chopped onion and cook for about 2 mins until softened. Add the rice and stir for 2 mins until it is translucent and well coated with oil.

Pour in white wine; it will bubble and steam rapidly and evaporate. Add a ladleful of stock and cook, stirring occassionally until the stock is absorbed.

Continue adding the stock, about half a ladleful at a time, allowing each to be absorbed before adding the next. This should take about 20-25 mins. The risotto should have a creamy consistency and the rice should be tender, but still firm to the bite.

Stir in the courgette/squash mixture with any juices, the butter, the fresh basil and the Parmesan. Serve and enjoy



  1. Great recipe and thanks for sharing but do let's use healthy olive oil - we live in the South after all.

    1. Oh Alice, I'm in a bit of an olive oil dilemma! I love it and used to use it all the time, but I have recently read two books saying vegetable based oils should never be used for cooking. They can become unstable when heated and the better quality of the oil the more unstable. I still drizzle with my walnut, olive and colza/rapeseed, but I have taken to using butter for cooking. This goes along with advice from our local colza oil producer who was insistent that I should never heat his oil! I do try to be healthy, but sometimes it seems so complicated!

  2. Hi Jacqueline, could I leave out the wine and use more stock instead? Not averse to using wine in cooking but just don't have any white in today ... Thanks

    1. Oh yes, I can't see it being a problem. I have also used rosé or martini!

  3. This looks terrific. Yesterday I scored one big zucchini -- how do you think the three courgettes translate to cups? I'm quite sure I'd have enough -- but don't want to do too much! ~ jeanie from Marmelade Gypsy

    1. Hi Jeanie, I've always been confused by cups as I must have many different sizes in my cupboard so never know which would be the right one to measure with. Sorry this isn't much help, but in uk and in France we've always used measuring scales for cooking and baking.


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