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Lyndey Milan’s risotto with espresso and capers

Preparation time
10 Minutes
Cooking time
25 Minutes
4 (or 6 entrees)


5 cups (1.25L) chicken stock

1 cup (250ml) hot water

2 tbsp (40ml) extra virgin olive oil

2 leeks, washed and chopped

2 cups (400g) arborio rice

½ cup (125ml) dry white wine

2 x 1/4 cup (2 x 60ml) brewed espresso

2 tbsp butter

1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese + extra to finish

1 bunch garlic chives, cut into 5cm lengths or 125g fresh garlic leaves or spinach

Salt and freshly ground pepper

1/3 cup baby capers, rinsed and drained

1 tbsp ground espresso powder, for garnish

8 shards crisp pancetta or prosciutto (optional)


1. Bring stock to a simmer in a medium saucepan; cover and keep warm over low heat. Or heat in a large jug in the microwave. Boil kettle for water.

2. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat, and cook the leeks, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 3 minutes. Add the rice and stir until toasted, about 2 minutes. Add the wine and stir until it evaporates. Add 1 cup of the hot stock and cook over moderate heat, stirring constantly, until absorbed. Repeat the process, gradually using a total of 5 cups stock, plus hot water as needed and finally

¼ cup (60ml) hot espresso, stirring until the rice is al dente yet creamy, about 22 minutes.

3. Boil the remaining brewed espresso over high heat in a small saucepan until reduced to 2 tbsp, about 5 minutes.

4. Remove the risotto from the heat; stir in the butter, cheese and greens. Season with salt and pepper and mound in serving bowls. Scatter the capers over the risotto and the reduced espresso around it. Garnish with the espresso powder, extra cheese and pancetta (if using) and serve immediately.

Lyndey’s note: for crisper leeks, cook them first, then remove from the pan while you cook the rice and stir in again later with the greens.

+ Wine

Medium to full-bodied, plush and juicy, the 2016 Dowie Doole BFG Grenache is ideal with the risotto thanks to its deep core of mulberry, plum and spice, velvety tannins and light oak in the background. A Pinot Noir or Nero d’Avola would also be excellent choices.

Preparation time
10 Minutes
Cooking time
25 Minutes
4 (or 6 entrees)


Two Blues Sauvignon Blanc 2014
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