My dear friend Pete Goffe-Wood created this winner dish and we published his cookbook Kitchen Cowboys way back when. It’s a fine, fine dish to have in your arsenal of recipes. Says Pete; “This dish has chilly winter nights written all over it. It’s the one to knock up when your partner wants to stay in for some “quality time”, watch sensitive movies about relationships and gulp wine from huge glasses snuggled in front of an open fire.”

Serves 6


1 large butternut
2 litres (4 cups) vegetable stock
250g vegan butta, cut into blocks
5ml (1 tsp) ground cinnamon
5ml (1 tsp) grated nutmeg
45ml (3 Tbsp) brown sugar
sea salt & freshly ground black pepper
1 onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
375ml (1½ cups) risotto rice
30ml (2 Tbsp) pine nuts
250ml (1 cup) sage leaves


Wash, peel and seed the butternut. Put the peel and seeds into a large saucepan, add the stock and bring to the boil. Cover and simmer over very low heat.

Roughly chop the butternut, place it on a baking tray, dot with a third of the vegan butta and season with cinnamon, nutmeg and brown sugar, and a little salt and pepper. Roast at 180°C for about 40 minutes until the butternut is soft and starts to caramelise.

Sweat the onion and garlic in 15ml (1 Tbsp) of the remaining vegan butta in a medium saucepan until soft and translucent. Add the rice and stir for a couple of minutes until it, too, is translucent.

Strain the stock and pour a ladle full at a time onto the rice, stirring occasionally. Continue until all the liquid has been used and the rice is cooked. Remove the pan from the heat, add the roasted butternut to the risotto and season with salt and pepper.

To serve, heat the rest of the vegan butta in a frying pan, add the pine nuts and sage leaves and fry until the sage is crisp and the pine nuts are golden. Pour over the risotto and serve immediately.


For a delicious wine-pairing, the richness of this dish is crying out for wood, so choose a wooded Chenin Blanc with an acidic edge or a fruity, oaked Chardonnay.

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