Chef's Recipes

Pumpkin risoni

Australian Gourmet Traveller recipe for pumpkin risoni by Shannon Bennett.

By Shannon Bennett & Mark Brigg
  • Serves 4
  • 1 hr 30 mins preparation
  • 2 hrs 10 mins cooking plus cooling
Pumpkin risoni
Pumpkin risoni

“The technique used in this recipe is similar to that used for a classic risotto – you can use arborio rice instead of the risoni if you prefer. We use butternut for ours, but you could use Jap pumpkin or any other full-flavoured variety.”


  • 250 gm risoni
  • 350 ml warm chicken stock
Pumpkin purée
  • ½ ripe butternut pumpkin (about 600gm), coarsely chopped
  • ½ garlic head
  • 4 thyme sprigs
Acid butter
  • 50 ml dry white wine
  • ½ small onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 tsp Champagne vinegar
  • 2 thyme sprigs
  • 1 small fresh bay leaf
  • 125 gm cultured butter, finely chopped
Mojo sauce
  • 1/3 cup (loosely packed) coriander
  • 1½ tbsp finely chopped chives
  • ½ tsp Dijon mustard
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • ½ tsp white wine vinegar
  • 50 ml grapeseed oil


  • 1
    For pumpkin purée, preheat oven to 180C. Place pumpkin, garlic and thyme in the centre of a large piece of foil, season to taste, fold to enclose then roast until pumpkin is very tender (1-1½ hours). Transfer pumpkin flesh to a food processor (discard skin, garlic and thyme), process until smooth, set aside.
  • 2
    For acid butter, simmer wine, onion, vinegar, thyme and bay leaf in a saucepan over medium heat until reduced by four-fifths (4-8 minutes). Gradually whisk in butter until sauce is emulsified and thick (2-3 minutes). Remove from heat, pass through a fine sieve into a container and refrigerate until firm (1½ hours).
  • 3
    For mojo sauce, process coriander, chives, mustard, cumin and vinegar in a small food processor until smooth, then, with motor running, gradually add oil in a thin steady stream until sauce is thick and emulsified, season to taste and set aside.
  • 4
    Combine risoni and 250ml chicken stock in a saucepan and bring to the boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally and then continuously towards the end of cooking otherwise it will stick, until stock is absorbed (8-10 minutes; you may need to add more stock if too thick). Add 1 cup pumpkin purée (reserve remainder for another use), stir to combine and warm through, remove from heat, add 75gm acid butter (reserve remainder for another use) and Grana Padano, season to taste and serve risoni dotted with mojo sauce and scattered with coriander shoots.


This recipe is from the April 2011 issue of .
Drink Suggestion: Wooded chardonnay or off-dry fortified wine such as an oloroso sherry or Bual Madeira. Drink suggestion by Elizabeth Fairweather

  • Author: Shannon Bennett & Mark Brigg