Chef's Recipes

Minestra

Australian Gourmet Traveller recipe for minestra by Stefano di Pieri at Stefano's restaurant in Mildura

By Stefano de Pieri
  • Serves 6
  • 10 mins preparation
  • 2 hrs 20 mins cooking
Minestra
Minestra

“On a weekend getaway to Mildura, friends and I dined at Stefano’s. It was an amazing experience and I’d love to make the minestra for a dinner party I’m having soon. Would you ask Stefano di Pieri for the recipe?”
Roy Jamieson, Footscray, Vic

To request a recipe, write to Fare Exchange, , GPO Box 4088, Sydney, NSW 2001, or email us. All requests should include the restaurant’s name and address or business card, as well as your name and address.

Ingredients

  • 1 (about 500gm) cotechino (see note)
  • 2.5 litres (9 cups) chicken or beef stock (or combination of both), heated
  • 80 ml (1/3 cup) olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 400 gm (2 cups) carnaroli rice
  • 100 ml dry white wine
  • 40 gm (½ cup) finely grated parmesan
  • ½ cup (loosely packed) coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 3 mandarins, finely grated rind only (or to taste)

Method

Main
  • 1
    Place cotechino in a saucepan, cover with cold water and bring to the simmer over medium heat, reduce heat to low and cook for 1½ hours. Remove cotechino and cool completely. Halve and cut one half into 1cm pieces and set aside. Reserve remaining half for another use (see note).
  • 2
    Bring stock to the boil. Season to taste with sea salt, reduce heat to low and simmer until required. Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a large heavy-based saucepan over medium heat, add onion and cook until translucent (8-10 minutes). Add rice and stir to combine. Add white wine and cook until evaporated (2 minutes). Gradually add stock 1 cup at a time, adding more as liquid is absorbed and stirring occasionally. After 10 minutes add cotechino and continue cooking, adding stock until rice is al dente and all liquid is absorbed (25 minutes). Remove from heat. Add parmesan and parsley, then season to taste with mandarin rind and freshly ground black pepper. Serve immediately.

Notes

Cotechino is a large pork sausage from Emilia-Romagna in northern Italy. It is usually available from Italian butchers and specialist delicatessens but you may need to order it in advance. Leftover cotechino may be refrigerated for up to 3 days. Eat it warmed and served with steamed vegetables and salsa verde.

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  • Author: Stefano de Pieri