If you follow my instagram page you may have seen that I’ve started a new cooking challenge, for myself and for those who follow me. Every few weeks I will be asking my followers to give me an ingredient to cook with. I then use the ingredient to make something from scratch without the help of a recipe and photograph/record the process. Hopefully, this will not only challenge my creativity but it will also help me to produce some more delicious recipes for you!

The first ingredient was pumpkin! I picked it out from about 6 or so suggestions because there is nothing that defines October for me like pumpkins do. The result was a lovely risotto, with delicious sage roasted pumpkin and creamy taleggio. I wrote up the recipe if you want to make it!

Roast pumpkin, sage and taleggio risotto

Serves 4 | Prep 20 mins | Cook 30 mins
Easy | Gluten-free | Meat-free


You’ll need:

  • 400g pumpkin, diced into chunks;
  • small handful sage leaves;
  • olive oil;
  • 50g butter;
  • 1 onion, finely chopped;
  • 280g Aroborio risotto rice;
  • 150ml white wine;
  • 1l – 1.3l vegetable stock, kept warm;
  • 100g taleggio cheese, chopped;
  • freshly grated parmesan, to serve.

For the roast pumpkin, heat the oven to 220C/ 200C fan/Gas mark 7. Arrange the pumpkin on a large enough baking tray, sprinkle with the sage leaves, then drizzle with a little olive oil and season. Roast for 25 mins, turning once half way through until soft and slightly browned.


Meanwhile, start preparing the risotto. Heat a deep pan on a medium heat and melt the butter with a little olive oil. Add the onion and cook until browned (around 3 minutes). Add the risotto rice and stir well, coating with the butter all around, cook for a minute. Add 100ml of the wine and let it bubble for a minute. Then, gradually start adding the stock – a ladle at a time until all liquid is absorbed by the rice. This should take around 20 minutes. When you’ve used about 1l of the stock, check the rice – if it has softened your risotto is ready, however if it is still slightly tough keep adding stock.


When you are happy with the softness of your rice, add the final 50 ml wine, taleggio cheese and the roasted pumpkin and stir well until all liquid has been absorbed and the cheese has melted. Serve with a shaving of Parmesan, to taste.


I hope you enjoy this recipe which I developed as part of my ingredient challenge, showcasing one of my favourite vegetables, the pumpkin. If you would like to take part, do follow my Instagram page and look out for the next ingredient announcement!

Finally, special thanks to my friend Katrien for the photos she took! All featured in the post.