David Scott AllenMain CourseProvencal RecipesTasteVegetarian

Chestnut-Pumpkin Risotto with Hazelnuts for Fall

When fall weather has settled in, it’s an excuse to make this Chestnut-Pumpkin Risotto recipe that combines the rich, earthy flavours of the season. In Provence, from one week to the next the market shrinks in size as the seasonal vendors begin to pack-up their wares. Scarves replace multi-hued espadrilles, sweaters and puffy jackets take the place of bathing suit cover-ups. The produce artfully displayed in the stalls changes too. Tomatoes, zucchini, eggplant – the ingredients for ratatouille pushed aside making room for squash, pumpkins, walnuts, chestnuts and root vegetables. The recipe is finished with toasted hazelnuts from Piedmont the inspiration for some “nutty” creativity in my kitchen.


Chestnut-Pumpkin Risotto

Chestnut-Pumpkin Risotto with Hazelnuts

Risotto is easy to make as long as you have all your ingredients prepped in advance. Pour everyone a glass of wine and let the conversation flow. The chef needs to balances the stock level as the rice cooks, but it's an easy, vegetarian meal for cooler weather.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Italian
Servings 4 people


  • 6 cups Vegetable Broth
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 shallot diced
  • 1 Carrot diced
  • 1 stick Celery diced
  • 1 1/2 cups Arborio rice
  • 1 cup White Wine
  • 1 cup Roasted Pumpkin Purée
  • 6-8 oz Cooked Chestnuts sliced
  • Salt to taste
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano
  • 2 tbsp Butter
  • a squeeze Fresh Lemon Juice
  • 1/4 cup Hazelnuts skinned and toasted, coarsely chopped


  • Bring the broth to a simmer in a small pot on the back burner.
  • In a large pot, warm the olive over medium heat.
  • Add the shallot, carrot, and celery, and cook for several minutes, until the vegetables are softened but not browned.
  • Add the rice, stir to coat with the oil, and cook for a couple of minutes until the kernels have become opaque and look chalky.
  • Add the wine and cook, stirring, until the liquid has mostly been absorbed by the rice. Start adding the broth a ladleful at a time (about 1/2 cup), stirring and allowing most of the liquid to absorb before adding the next ladleful.
  • When you have about 1 cup of broth remaining, stir in the pumpkin purée and sliced chestnuts. Season with salt and pepper, then continue to add the remaining broth until it is used up. You want the texture to be creamy and smooth, and not thick and stodgy.
  • Finish the risotto by adding the Parmigiano-Reggiano, butter, and a squeeze of lemon juice.
  • Divide the risotto among 4 heated bowls and top with chopped hazelnuts.


* I roasted some small sweet pumpkins. This is definitely more flavorful than using canned pumpkin. However, if you are pressed for time canned pumpkin is fine too.
Keyword Chestnut, Pumpkin, Risotto
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Other Fall Recipes

Dinner Party Menu: 

Designed for a fall weekend dinner with friends this menu includes three delicious courses. Make the soup and short ribs in advance and slowly reheat them both while you are enjoying a cocktail. The finishing touch is the sweet tarte aux prunes.

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

Braised Short Ribs

Tarte aux Prunes – Prune Plum Tart

Please share this with friends and family.

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David Scott Allen

David Scott Allen

David Scott Allen is the author, photographer, and cook behind Cocoa & Lavender, a weekly food blog based in Tucson, Arizona. Passionate about travel, he especially enjoys eating traditional foods and learning local customs, whether in the United States or around the globe.

David's first trip to France took place when he was 14, and he returned as often as possible thereafter. However, it wasn't until his 50th birthday that he finally made it south to Provence. The beauty, history, charm, warmth, cuisine, and - of course - the rosé wines captured his heart. He shares his Provençal recipes here on Perfectly Provence, and his food and wine pairings monthly on the Provence WineZine.

David is a firm believer that sharing a meal with friends around the table is one of life's greatest pleasures. And if it happens to be in Provence, all the better!

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