Farro Risotto

Step 1: Heat oven to 200°C. Toss 2½ cups diced butternut squash with 2 tablespoons olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Place on a baking sheet and roast for 25–30 minutes until edges are browned and crisp. Remove from oven and immediately sprinkle 1 tablespoon chopped sage over the still hot squash.

Step 2: Meanwhile, bring 4 cups of water to boil over medium heat. Stir in 1 cup farro and cook for 15 minutes. Drain, reserving 1 cup of the cooking liquid, and set aside.

Step 3: In a pan, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat. Add in 2 cups chopped shiitake mushrooms and sauté, about 3 minutes, remove from pan and set aside.

Step 4: Melt 3 tablespoons butter in same pan over medium heat. Add 4 chopped shallots, 2 cloves minced garlic and 1 sprig thyme. Let cook until shallots become slightly caramelized, about 3 minutes. Add farro and stir, coating each kernel with butter. Add ½ cup white wine and let simmer off.

Step 5: Turn the heat down to low and begin alternately adding in 1 cup chicken (or vegetable) stock and the farro cooking liquid, a ¼ cup at a time, stirring continuously with each addition. Do not add more liquid until the previous ¼ cup has been completely absorbed by the farro. This process should take about 25–30 minutes. After the last addition, stir until about ⅔ of the liquid has been absorbed, and add in the mushrooms and roasted squash.

Step 6: Fold in 1 ½ cups shredded parmesan cheese and stir until just melted. Fold in 1 tablespoon crème fraiche. Add 1 teaspoon chopped sage for garnish, salt and pepper.