Ruminations and recipes from a small kitchen in a big city.


The incredible shrinking pumpkin.

Whole pumpkins were fifty cents a kilogram a couple of weeks ago, so one large orb - tangerine-flecked olive green and weighing in at a tick over five kilograms - rode home on the passenger seat, disdainful of the bag of forgettable shopping items beside it.

Coming days saw roasted pumpkin with rosemary and garlic; pumpkin soup; sliced and boiled pumpkin tossed through rigatoni with pesto and roasted red capsicum; and a kind of lasagne comprising pasta sheets and thinly sliced pumpkin bound by a bechamel-like sauce containing crushed walnuts and blue cheese. Incredible. 

More days passed. The pumpkin was shrinking. The risotto finished it off. I peeled, cubed and roasted the last quarter of the golden gourd with olive oil and a shower of basil, and then folded it through a three-quarters-cooked pot of risotto. The rice had been progressively introduced in the large pot to olive oil to coat, white wine to flavour, chicken stock to absorb, butter to oleaginate, salt and pepper to season, and parmesan to finish it off. The last of the pumpkin, well-roasted and semi-caramelised, kind of broke up and disappeared, infusing the dish with its sunset-coloured, sweet-tasting goodness.

It was like farewelling an old friend.


Dr. Alice said...

The risotto sounds excellent.
Are you noticing a rise in food prices where you are? They certainly are going up here, particularly meat.

paul kennedy said...

Fruit skyrocketed over summer thanks to lack of travelling pickers; meat is rising slowly. But gluts always bring prices down as in the case above. We usually follow seasonal items.