A Habitat inspired risotto, with design circa 1996

Rarely when I look at food do I think of cushions and vice versa, but simmering this butternut squash and asparagus risotto the other night spirited me right back to 1996 and my first owned apartment. Built by Bellway, we then altered it beyond recognition with roughly plastered walls, yellow pine reclaimed flooring and terracotta tiles, a Mediterranean paradise in the heart of Withington and I loved it. Luckily at the time, Habitat’s shelves were piled with a palette of colours guaranteed to remind you of sunny holidays, enough juicy oranges and lime greens to fill an orchard. Stirring up this meal stirred up some memories and I had a little root around in the Moregeous store. Sure enough, there they were, two of the cushion covers from the time, I was right!

Habitat on acid circa 1996

Sometimes it’s nice to hoard stuff and then find it again. The finished meal wasn’t bad either 🙂

Butternut squash and asparagus risotto with chilli basil beef

Addendum just for Alison:

Pack of arborio rice, cook as usual risotto but I added half a butternut squash cut down into bite size chunks and the twiggy ends of the asparagus just after the wine had evaporated. I used one veg and two chicken stock cubes diluted and just kept adding til almost cooked. At that stage took out the woody asparagus ends (which had given a bit more flavour) and added in the chopped up remainder of asparagus spears. Added a know of butter and few teaspoons of parmesan and let stand whilst I flash fried the beef, which I’d marinated for an hour in lemon & chilli flakes, then added Greek Basil (small leaves) at the end and served on the risotto x


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