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Becky's also a great cook. In Panama she showed me how to make risotto. It was kind of a slap-shot recipe as we generally had neither the correct arborio rice or real parmesean. We'd make it with that powdered Parmesan stuff that is shelf stable and regular white rice. It was some of the most comforting food we ate in Panama and got reinvented many times over. This is my favorite Panama reincarnation. It leaves out the Parmesan all together so I'm not even sure if it counts as Risotto.
This recipe was created out on desperation. How to cook yet another pumpkin? I bought an auyama (pumpkin-like winter squash) at the fruit stand in Chepo. I pitched the skin and innards in the compost pile. Soon we had little pumpkin seedlings coming up in the resting side of our compost bin. We let them grow. A month or two later there were five huge pumpkins. Luckily, auyamas store well. This recipe is a hybrid of pumpkin pie, curry and Italian risotto. It's entirely different than its sources and entirely delicious!
Curried Pumpkin Risotto2 liters of water
1 cube bullion (chicken, beef or veggie)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 onion, chunked
6 cloves garlic, chunked
1 1/2 cups dry rice
5 cups squash, pealed and cubed
1 thumb sized piece of ginger, grated
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
2 tablespoons curry powder
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 cup Soya Chunk, re-hydrated (Textured Soy Protein)
Step 1: In a pot, heat water with the bullion to make stock. Keep the stock simmering for the whole recipe. If you have real stock it will make this recipe all the better. We used bullion because it was easy to backpack in.
Step 2: In a separate large pot, saute the onions and garlic in the oil until translucent.
Step 3: Add the rice, squash, ginger and the rest of the spices. Ladle in enough stock to cover all the ingredients with about a half inch of liquid.
Step 4: "Stand by your risotto!" Now imagine that said with a British accent. That's how Becky would say it. Add a cup of stock every couple of minutes to the rice mixture. Stir continuously, scraping the bottom of the pot, between cups of stock. If you don't stir it will burn to the bottom. The stock should always just cover the ingredients, but not by more than an inch and the mixture should stay just below a simmer. The constant stirring will break down the rice as it cooks, transforming it into a sticky-risotto texture. It will also break down the squash into a creamy puree. You may or may not use all the stock, that's okay.
Step 5: When the rice and pumpkin are cooked and the mixture is thick, add the pre-hydrated Soya. Take the risotto off the heat. (Stir in an extra cup of stock, if it is really thick because it will thicken as it cools.) Let it set for ten minutes covered.
Step 6: Serve and enjoy! This is a giant pot of risotto, share with your neighbors, save for left overs, or cut the recipe in half. To mix up the flavor, at the end, try adding a cap full of vinegar and some honey to make it more sweet and sour. For a little something crunchy, serve with finely diced onions on top.
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There are is only one pediatric doctor and no pediatric nurses in Sierra Leone. Becky is a dedicated nurse who want to teach nurses. With your vote you can help her recieve the funding she needs to get training to a country that needs it. Please take five minutes and vote for Rebecca Cridford. Thanks http://www.facebook.com/worldofdifference?v=app_10531514314Good Luck Becky!