Quick Pumpkin and Kale Risotto + Arancini
  • ½ cup raw pecans
  • olive oil
  • fresh sage leaves (about 20)
  • 1 leek, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp dry or semi-dry white wine
  • Two 9.9-oz packages of Veetee Basmati and Wild Rice
  • ¼ - ½ cup chicken or vegetable stock (or water, no big deal)
  • 2 cups packed kale, thinly sliced
  • ⅛ tsp nutmeg
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • ¼ cup mascarpone cheese
  • salt and pepper, to taste
For the arancini:
  • leftover risotto
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  • marinara sauce
  1. Place the pecans on a baking sheet and toast in a 275-degree oven for 5-10 minutes, until fragrant and browned. Let them cool down for a few minutes and then roughly chop them. Set aside.
  2. Meanwhile, heat about 2 tbsp of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the sage leaves to the pan and spread them out. Fry until crispy, using tongs to flip them over occasionally. This should only take a few minutes. Set aside on a paper towel-lined plate to drain. Once they've cooled, give them a rough chop and set aside.
  3. Add more oil back to the skillet if it seems too dry and turn the heat to medium. Add the leek and cook for about 3 minutes until softened, stirring occasionally.
  4. Add the garlic and cook for another minute while stirring. Add the wine and cook until it's cooked off.
  5. Add the rice, ¼ cup stock, kale and nutmeg. Cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring constantly to break up the rice and incorporate everything. Add more stock if it seems too dry.
  6. Add the pumpkin, mascarpone and parmesan. Stir until combined and warmed through.
  7. Stir in a portion of the chopped sage. Salt to taste. Remove from the heat.
  8. Serve warm, topped with toasted pecans and crispy sage.
To make the arancini:
  1. Heat the oven to 400°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Place the panko bread crumbs on a large plate or shallow bowl.
  3. Scoop a tbsp-sized amount of the risotto and form it into a ball. Roll in the bread crumbs and place on the baking sheet. Continue with the rest of the risotto.
  4. Bake for about 25 minutes or until golden brown and crispy.
  5. Serve with warm marinara sauce.
Adapted from Veetee Rice, the Love and Lemons Cookbook and various other sources
Recipe by Cake Over Steak at https://cakeoversteak.com/quick-pumpkin-and-kale-risotto-arancini/