Holiday Butternut Squash Risotto – Serves 4

From the kitchen of Chef Dave Perlick, Region Restaurant in Barrington, IL

¼ lb. fresh bacon
½ yellow onion
2 Tbsp butter
1/2 honey crisp apple
1 cup diced ¼’ butternut squash
4 sage leaves, ribbon cut
1 Tbsp salt
8 twists fresh black pepper
1 cup Arborio rice
1 cup dry white wine
1 cup butternut squash cream (recipe follows)
3 cups boxed high-quality chicken broth
4 Tbsp fresh butter
¼ cup shredded parmesan
¼ # brie cheese
2 Tbsp pure maple syrup
1 Tbsp. chopped roasted hazelnuts

Butternut Squash Cream – boil all until tender and puree

1 cup butternut squash
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup of water
1 Tbsp Sugar


In a medium saucepot over medium heat add the first three ingredients. Render bacon until lightly golden brown. 10 minutes.
Add next four ingredients cook and for five minutes stirring occasionally.

Add white wine and reduce by half.

Add chicken stock and cook for 15 to 20 minutes or until rice is “al dente” tender.
Add remaining ingredients except for nuts and syrup, stir well.
Season with salt and pepper to your taste.
Consistency should be soft and pourable….
Pour in serving platter/bowls.
Sprinkle with hazelnuts and maple syrup.

Garnish ideas, apple fan, fresh thyme, shaved parmesan…