Stuart Collins’ squash and cumin risotto

17 Nov 2021 | Updated on: 27 Sep 2022 |By Luxury London

This seasonal classic by Stuart Collins, head chef at Whitchurch's Docket 33 restaurant and Great British Menu contestant, is given a modern update thanks to a subtle touch of cumin. Finished with rosemary, sage and pumpkin


Serves four

300g Arborio rice1 litre Vegetable nage200g Wild mushroom, prepared and washed200g Squash, 1cm dice100g Squash and cumin puree50g Crème fraiche75g Parmesan50g Butter, unsalted10g Rosemary, chopped10g Sage, chopped15g Pumpkin seeds, toasted and chopped1 LemonSalt and pepperOlive oil

For the vegetable nage1 Onion1 Leeks2 Carrots1/4 Celery head4 Cloves of garlic, unpeeled and lightly crushed2 Star anise1 Pinches of ground white pepper2 Sprigs of Thyme2 Sprigs of Tarragon3 Sprigs Chervil1 Sprigs Coriander1 Bay leaf200ml White Wine

For the squash and cumin puree200g squash, diced75g Shallots, sliced25gr Butter100ml Vegetable nage4g Pumpkin oil3g Toasted cumin seeds, ground in pestle and mortar Pinch of Salt


For the vegetable nage:

  1. Wash, peel and cut vegetables into 1cm square. In a stainless steel saucepan, put all the vegetables, garlic, star anise, ground pepper and bay leaf and cover with water.
  2. Bring to the boil and cook until the vegetables are soft. Once tender add the white wine and bring back to the boil.
  3. Remove from the heat and add the fresh herbs and allow to cool.

For the puree:

  1. Sweat the cumin in the butter softly for 2 minutes. Add the squash and shallot into the butter and sweat for 10 minutes with a pinch of salt. Add the vegetable nage, bring to the boil and cover with a lid, cook out for 20 minutes.
  2. Place into a blender and blend until a smooth and fine puree. Finish with salt and pepper, and pumpkin oil.

For the risotto

  1. Heat a thin film of oil in a thick bottom pan over a medium heat. Add the rice, and sweat with no colour for 2 minutes. Gradually add the vegetable nage, a little at a time, stirring regularly. The rice will take about 18 minutes to cook through.
  2. Once the rice is cooked, add the squash and cumin puree, crème fraiche and 50g grated parmesan. Stir well and adjust the seasoning to taste.
  3. To make the sautéed squash dice, use a little olive oil and butter to gently cook for approximately 5 minutes until tender. Reserve for later use.
  4. To make the pumpkin seed butte, dice the butter into 1cm cubes, heat until the butter turns to a golden brown colour, add a squeeze of lemon juice, the chopped sage and rosemary and chopped pumpkin seeds. Adjust the seasoning to taste.

To finish

  1. Saute the prepared wild mushrooms in foaming butter with a pinch of salt and pepper.
  2. Place the risotto into a bowl, add the squash dice on top, with the mushroom and a few parmesan shavings.
  3. Mix the beurre noisette well and spoon over the top of the risotto.

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