Karista's Kitchen Life Around My Table Main Dish Pasta

Brown Butter Sweet Potato Risotto

Autumn Color, subtle nutty flavors and fragrant spices are highlighted in this Brown Butter Sweet Potato Risotto with Walnut Gremolata.

Brown Butter Sweet Potato Risotto with Walnut Gremolata

I’m back! Did you wonder if I’d ever post again? I kept thinking about you over the summer, thinking that I might sneak in a quick summer recipe or a post just to say hello. Obviously, that didn’t happen. Which is why I’m posting this gorgeous recipe today. I want to say “thank you” for your patience!

I spent the summer completing my first cookbook manuscript called, The Oregon Farm Table Cookbook. I am so excited to share this book with you! We don’t have a publication date yet, but I’ll keep you posted on details.

Today however, I’m talking about risotto!

Brown Butter Sweet Potato Risotto served in mini pumpkins

The autumn season is a magical time of year when summer grilling and chilled recipes begin to fade into the past, and a new season of all things warm and cozy emerges.

Risotto is comfort food for all seasons. However, I especially enjoy the art of preparing risotto. Sometimes, simply the act of standing at the stove stirring the risotto is somehow comforting. The process of gently browning the butter and adding the onions and rice. Then stirring in that first cup of wine followed by a rich broth. Stirring slowly, deliberately, until the risotto becomes al dente and creamy.

I think what I love most about risotto is that is pairs so beautifully with an abundance of seasonal ingredients.  For this recipe, I’ve added the nutty flavor of brown butter combined with sweet potato puree. These ingredients give the risotto a slightly sweet and nutty flavor balanced with yellow onion, vegetable broth and fresh chopped sage.

Toasted walnuts with a slightly sweet and herb flavor seemed like the perfect autumn garnish for this Brown Butter Sweet Potato Risotto. I think it completes this playful dish with a bit of texture and spice.

When preparing risotto, I typically use Arborio rice. However, if you find Campari rice, that’s also another great option. Stirring the rice while infusing the broth is key to a creamy risotto. If the heat is too high and the risotto cooks too quickly, it may not be quite as creamy. So be sure to keep the risotto at a simmer while stirring.

Brown Butter Sweet Potato Risotto with Walnut Gremolata

Speaking of stirring, years ago, a lovely Italian Nonni told me that if you stir your risotto counter clock-wise, it’ll turn out perfect every time. From that moment forward, I stir my risotto counter clock-wise and my risotto is always lush and silky. I suppose the moral of this story would be, never disregard the advice of an Italian Nonni.

Autumn color and fragrant spices are the highlight of this seasonal risotto. Because of the unique flavor of sweet potatoes and walnuts, I like to pair this risotto with a white wine. I’m partial to a dry white but for this risotto a floral Riesling is luscious, as is a dry chardonnay.

However, I’m also a lover of Pinot Noir. Not only do I live smack in the middle of Pinot Noir country, but it’s truly one of my favorite wines. A Pinot Noir with subtle notes of vanilla and cherry will also pair deliciously with this risotto.

Set the table, light the candles, turn the music on low and savor the flavor of the autumn season with this lovely Brown Butter Sweet Potato Risotto with Walnut Gremolata.

Peace and Love,

Karista

Brown Butter Sweet Potato Risotto
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1 ratings

Category: Entree

Cuisine: Italian

Serves 6

Brown Butter Sweet Potato Risotto

Autumn color and fragrant spices are the highlight of this seasonal risotto. For this recipe, the sweet potato puree gives the risotto a slightly sweet flavor balanced with yellow onion, vegetable broth and fresh chopped sage.

Ingredients

  • 1 medium to large sweet potato
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • ½ cup diced yellow onion
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage
  • 1 cup Arborio rice
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 4-5 cups warm vegetable broth
  • ¼ teaspoon sweet paprika
  • ½ cup grated parmesan cheese
  • ¼ cup heavy cream (optional)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts
  • ½ tablespoon extra -virgin olive oil
  • Pinch Cayenne pepper
  • 1 -2 tablespoons brown sugar or maple sugar
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh Italian parsley

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 400F. Pierce the sweet potato several times with a fork and then wrap it loosely in foil.
  2. Place it on a small baking sheet or in a small baking dish and put it in the oven. Bake for about 35-45 minutes or until the potato is soft.
  3. Let the sweet potato cool and once it easy to handle, peel off the skin and discard. Mash the sweet potato in a food processor or by hand until it’s nicely pureed. Set aside.
  4. In a large pot, heat the butter over medium low heat. The butter will melt, become frothy and as soon as the froth begins to dissipate you should see brown flecks (brown butter) in the bottom of the pan. Add the onions, sage and rice immediately and cook for a minute or two just until the onions are wilted.
  5. Turn the heat to medium and stir in ½ cup of wine and when the wine has reduced by half, add 1 cup of vegetable broth. Continue to stir the rice and when the liquid has reduced by half, add another ½-3/4 cup of broth until you’ve used 4-5 cups of broth and the rice is done. Every stove top is different, so if your liquid is cooking down too quickly, turn the heat to medium low or low.
  6. I like my risotto, al dente, which means it has just a little bite to the rice. Not mushy. Stir in the sweet paprika, parmesan cheese, heavy cream, pureed sweet potato and season to taste with salt and pepper.
  7. To make the Gremolata, heat a sturdy skillet on medium low heat. When it’s warm add the chopped walnuts, olive oil, brown sugar, cayenne pepper and Italian parsley and cook them until they begin to get toasty. Transfer them to parchment or wax paper.
  8. Plate the Risotto and then top with the Walnut Gremolata. Serve immediately.
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