The poached lobster in this recipe is certainly not essential; the mixture of pumpkin puree and parmesan provides more than enough flavour.
350g pumpkin or butternut squash, peeled
1 shallot, peeled and finely chopped
150g risotto rice
700ml-1litre chicken or vegetable stock
2 lobster tails, poached (optional)
75g parmesan cheese, grated
1 teaspoon lime juice
salt and black pepper
Cut half the pumpkin into small dice (approx 1cm cubes).
Roughly chop the remainder, drizzle with olive oil, season with salt and black pepper and place on a baking tray.
Cook in a preheated oven (200C/fan180/gas 6) for 30 minutes or until tender.
When the pumpkin is still warm, tip into a blender and blend to a puree. Then pass the mixture through a fine sieve.
Melt a tablespoon of butter in a saucepan, add the shallot and cook, without colouring, for 3-4 minutes. Add the rice and the diced raw pumpkin and stir well to coat.
Pour about 100ml of stock over the rice and continue to cook for 12-14 minutes, adding more stock to the pan every few minutes or as soon as it is absorbed.
Roughly chop one of the lobster tails (if using). When the rice is tender, with a little bite, add the pumpkin puree and the chopped lobster to the pan.
Stir in 40g butter, the mascarpone and the parmesan. If you are using lobster, melt the last of the butter in a separate pan, add the chicken stock and heat until almost boiling.
Add the remaining lobster tail and remove the pan from the heat.
After 1-2 minutes remove the lobster and slice thinly.
Divide the rice between four plates, top with a couple of slices of lobster (if using) and decorate with frisee lettuce leaves.