Island Risotto with Acorn Squash, Shitakes, Ginger & Malibu Rum!

Posted by on Jan 19, 2012 in rice, Side dishes, Veggies | 6 comments

If you’re like me a trip to the islands just isn’t happening this month unless……hmmmm…..we create our own oasis with our dinner.

It was around 6p when I started to contemplate what to make the Brit for dinner tonight. While I try and achieve a lifestyle we can both get used to with this blog (ok so I haven’t come close yet, but I will) the poor man is hustling three jobs. Tomorrow night he begins teaching Anatomy and Physiology again after slaving away all day trying to create antibiotics that we won’t be resistant to, so tonight I wanted to make him a decent meal.

I had already defrosted Boneless Chicken Breasts in an Asian Peanut Marinade from my freezer debacle so I was slightly limited in what to make to accompany them. I was thinking something with rice, possibly a stir fry, but that was too predictable and I am anything but that in the kitchen. A quick survey of available vegetables in the fridge included an acorn squash, Kabocha squash, radicchio, shitake mushrooms, snow pea pods, yellow and orange peppers, beets, broccoli, parsnips…..ok, ok, so I over shop-you never know when you might get snowed in in Colorado!

I honed in on the acorn squash and I was still thinking rice when I began to contemplate risotto. The traditional risotto one would make with squash would probably be savory, maybe a little sage and thyme and some white wine, parmigiana and cream, but that would go with chicken in an Asian Peanut Marinade like the Dixie Chicks playing the Republican National Convention. Plus I was out of white wine.

While making a  quick survey of the Liquor Cabinet I spotted a bottle of Coconut Liquor flavored Malibu Rum. Now we were talkin. The little wheels in my head began to spin and I started thinking…..Ginger, yes! I had fresh ginger! My beloved Garam Masala! Certainly that would belong in my risotto. And shallots. What about shitakes? Oh yes, they would impart their lovely earthy flavor. And let’s not forget those beautiful orange peppers, their sweetness would absolutely add to this dish. I went to work and here’s how it came together.

Acorn Squash, Ginger, Shallots & Orange Pepper


Island Risotto with Acorn Squash, Shitakes, Ginger & Malibu Rum!
Recipe type: Side dish
Author: Jill Mant~a SaucyCook
Prep time: 5 mins
Cook time: 50 mins
Total time: 55 mins
Serves: 4
Shallots, Shitakes, Acorn Squash and Orange Peppers sauteed in healthy coconut oil with fresh ginger and Garam Masala marry a melange of rices cooked in Malibu Coconut flavored Rum and chicken broth to create a quick Island Get-a-Way.
  • 3 Shallots, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 inch piece of Ginger, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 Acorn Squash, peeled, seeded and cut into bite sized pieces
  • 1/2 Orange Bell Pepper, cored, seeded and chopped into bite sized pieces
  • 2 Tbsp Coconut Oil
  • 1 tsp Garam Masala
  • 3 Shitake Mushrooms, halved and cut into slices
  • 1 cup Organic Harvest Medley Rice-a blend of CalMati Brown Rice, Wild Rice, Sweet Brown Rice, Heirloom Red Rice
  • 3/4 cup Malibu Coconut Liquor flavored Rum
  • 2 1/2 cups Chicken Broth-May use Vegetable Broth to make it Vegetarian
  • 2 Tbsp Honey Flavored Greek Yogurt
  • 1 Tbsp freshly chopped Cilantro
  1. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat.
  2. Add shallots, ginger and Garam Masala and stir for 1 minute.
  3. Add acorn squash, pepper and mushrooms. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring often.
  4. Add the rice and about 1/4 cup of the Malibu and stir constantly until it evaporates.
  5. Add about one cup of the chicken broth, 1/4 cup at a time, stirring constantly until it evaporates.
  6. Add the remainder of the Malibu, 1/4 cup at a time, stirring continuously, until it too evaporates.
  7. Keep adding the chicken broth, 1/4 cup at a time, stirring, stirring, stirring and incorporating it into what now appears to be a thick creamy substance holding the rice and vegetables together.
  8. All together this will take about 50 minutes, so pour yourself a nice glass of wine, crank the tunes and stir. I promise this dish will be worth it.
  9. When the risotto is done-you’ll know this because the rice will no longer be crunchy, stir in the yogurt to finish and cook for just a few minutes more to incorporate.
  10. Garnish with freshly chopped Cilantro.

This could also be a vegetarian entree for 2 if made with vegetable broth in lieu of chicken. It could be Vegan if you omit the yogurt.


Shallots, Ginger & Garam Masala cooking in Coconut Oil

Add Squash, Peppers & Shitakes to the pan

Add rice to pan

Add broth

Keep Stirring and Adding Broth & Malibu

Keep Stirring ~Almost There!

Adding Yogurt

Put on a Bob Marley CD, a sarong and sit down and eat mon!





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  1. 1-20-2012

    Wow Jill. This looks great. The ginger, coconut oil, curry and squash is such a lovely way of making boring old risotto the prom queen. Nice!

    • 1-20-2012

      Thanks France! And wait until you see my post on your amazing Kabocha Gnocchi recipe tonight….I’m still licking my chops!

  2. 1-20-2012

    What a great way to use garam masala. I love that this is Asian/French/Caribbean fusion!

    • 1-20-2012

      In my humble opinion there is not a bad way to use Garam Masala Hazel! Thanks for stopping by.

  3. 1-20-2012

    Oh dear! The title of that recipe just gets better and better the more you read it! I bet it’s delicious!

    • 1-20-2012

      And just imagine finishing off the meal with those delicious looking salted chocolate pots from your blog Rebekka! Yum!

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