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Gabrielle Masefield Hallowe’en special: Aromatic Pumpkin Quinoa Risotto

Gabrielle Masefield is a professional chef who specialises in healthy modern cuisine. She is trained in many cooking styles from traditional French to modernist raw vegan and has a diploma in holistic nutrition from the School of Natural Health Sciences.

Gabrielle’s goal is to encourage and inspire others to release many common diet rules and reduce their anxiety and uncertainty around cooking. She focuses on creating enjoyment and a sense of fun in her dishes rather than any strict rules around particular diets, exclusion of certain ingredients or food groups.

Gabrielle Masefield chef and nutritionist

Gabrielle creates instead a relaxed ethos of inclusion and balance towards cooking, eating and nutrition concepts as well as joy and community through food.

Aromatic Pumpkin Quinoa Risotto

A creamy, luxurious risotto is the ultimate comfort food for a chilly Autumnal evening but this recipe has a healthy twist of swapping risotto rice for protein rich, whole-grain quinoa. Folding in glazed roasted pumpkin purée gives richness to this warming classic which also has caramelised cubes of pumpkin to really let the flavour of these glorious seasonal vegetables shine.

High in antioxidants, vitamin A, C and inflammatory fighting compounds; pumpkins, squash and other varieties from the cucurbita family have amazing health benefits and should be included in our diets wherever possible especially when they’re in season – which is right now!


Serves 4

2 tbsp olive oil

1 yellow onion finely chopped

4 sprigs thyme

2 large cloves garlic, grated

1 cup uncooked white quinoa

2 tbsp coconut oil

300g pumpkin peeled and chopped into small cubes

520ml vegetable stock

2 tbsp honey

60ml soy sauce or tamari

1 tbsp grated ginger

1 tsp ground turmeric

1 tbsp fresh coriander and black sesame seeds for garnish


In a medium saucepan, heat the olive oil gently and add the onion, thyme and garlic and sauté for 3-4 minutes.

Add the quinoa and sauté for another couple of minutes. Add 480ml of the vegetable stock, bring tot he boil and then reduce the heat to a simmer and cover with a lid until the quinoa has absorbed all the liquid. Remove from the heat and set aside while you prepare the rest of the risotto.

In a large frying pan, gently heat the coconut oil, add the chopped pumpkin, grated ginger and turmeric and sauté for 5 minutes, tossing slightly until the pumpkin cubes are golden brown on all sides. Add the vegetable stock, soya sauce and honey, cover with a lid and cook on low heat for a further 10-15 minutes until the pumpkin is tender. Remove the lid and tip half the contents of the pan and any excess cooking liquid into a blender. Blend until completely smooth.

Stir half the pumpkin purée into the cooked quinoa to create a lovely creamy texture (at this point you could throw in a big handful of baby spinach and stir through the quinoa to add some extra greens into this dish)

The remaining purée can be used as a base to decorate the plate. Smear a generous dollop of pumpkin purée into he middle of a shallow bowl, top with a pile of the the sticky sweet and salt quinoa risotto and then top with the remaining cubes of seared pumpkin.

Decorate with a sprinkle of black sesame seeds and freshly chopped coriander.

Instagram: @gabriellemasefield

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