TOTAL TIME: 1 hour, plus time to chill the risotto.
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for frying
- 1 medium onion, diced fine
- 2 cups butternut squash, about 2/3 pound, cut in 1/2-inch dice
- Salt and pepper
- 1 cup Carnaroli or Arborio rice
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage
- 1/4 cup dry white wine
- 4 to 5 cups vegetable broth (see recipe)
- 1 ounce grated Parmesan, plus more for garnish
- 4 ounces grated Fontina
- Zest and juice of 1 lemon
- 2 tablespoons finely sliced chives, plus more for garnish
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1. Put butter and 2 tablespoons olive oil in a wide heavy-bottom saucepan or deep skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook until softened and lightly colored, about 5 minutes. Add squash and season generously with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until squash is cooked but not soft, about 5 minutes. Add rice and sage and stir to combine, then add wine and cook for 1 minute more.
2. Add 2 cups vegetable broth and bring to a brisk simmer. Cook until liquid is nearly evaporated, about 5 minutes. Continue adding broth 1 cup at a time and cook in the same fashion until rice is just done and all liquid is absorbed (it should take 4 to 5 cups broth), about 10 minutes. Turn off heat and stir in Parmesan, Fontina and lemon zest and juice. Taste and adjust seasoning (rice should be well seasoned). Stir in chives, then spread mixture on a baking sheet or platter to cool. Cool for at least 2 hours (or refrigerate overnight, covered).
3. With a spoon, divide mixture into 12 pieces. Shape each piece into an oval patty. Roll patties lightly in flour to coat. Pour olive oil to a depth of 1/2 inch into a cast-iron skillet and place over medium heat. Dip floured rice patties briefly into beaten egg, then fry gently on both sides until browned. Drain on paper towels. Serve hot, sprinkled with more Parmesan and chives if desired.
YIELD: 4 to 6 servings