• This pumpkin, Gruyère and sage risotto is perfect as a side dish to meat or chicken, or served on its own as a starter.

    Recipe by Illanique van Aswegen Assisted by Myra van Aswegen
    Photograph by Adel Ferreira Assisted by Jömeri Mouton

    Pumpkin, Gruyère and sage risotto

    Serves: 4 as a starter
    Cooking Time: 1 hr



    • 1 tbsp salted butter
    • 1 tbsp olive oil
    • 300g pumpkin, peeled and diced
    • 1 tsp peeled and crushed garlic
    • 6 fresh sage leaves, chopped
    • salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

    • 1 tbsp salted butter
    • 1 tbsp olive oil
    • 125g (½ cup) leeks, thinly sliced
    • 1 tsp peeled and crushed garlic
    • 300g arborio/risotto rice
    • 250ml (1 cup) white wine
    • 750ml (3 cups) warm vegetable stock
    • 1 tsp butter
    • 125g (½ cup) Gruyère, finely grated
    • microgreens, to serve



    For the pumpkin, heat the butter and oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the pumpkin and garlic, and sauté until tender, about 10 minutes. Stir in the sage, fry for another 5 minutes and season.


    For the risotto, heat the butter and oil in a separate saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the leeks and garlic, and let them sweat until tender, 10 – 15 minutes. Cook over low heat and don’t allow them to brown.


    Stir in the rice, add the wine and increase heat to cook off the alcohol, about 5 minutes.


    Start ladling in the warm stock. Add one ladle of stock at a time and stir continuously until the liquid is absorbed. Continue with the rest of the stock. It should take about 20 minutes for all the stock to be incorporated.


    Stir in the butter and cheese. Add the sautéed pumpkin mixture and season.


    Garnish with microgreens and serve immediately.


    Always serve risotto as soon as it is cooked – the longer it stands, the thicker it will get and the more the liquid will be absorbed.

    Like this recipe? Try out our other risotto dishes!