provided by Sally James, an Australian award-winning author, chef, and televison presenter
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 large firm green pear, peeled and diced
1 small bulb fennel (anise),
peeled and the white bulb finely sliced
juice and zest of ½ lemon
1 onion, chopped
1 ½ cups arborio rice
¾ cup Mak Cabernet Shiraz
4-5 cups hot chicken stock
2-3 leaves fresh basil
Heat the oil in a large based saucepan. Add the pear and cook for 1-2 minutes or until starting to soften. Remove from pan, toss in some of the lemon juice, season with pepper and set aside. Heat the remaining oil and sauté the onion for 1-2 minutes or until translucent. Add rice and cook 1-2 minutes. Pour in wine and cook stirring occasionally. After 15 minutes add the sautéed pear and fennel, then continue adding stock until rice is cooked, about 5-6 minutes. Add the remaining lemon juice, zest and basil. Remove from heat, cover and allow to sit for 2-3 minutes.
Serve topped with shaved parmesan cheese.
Alternatively: Wrap 2 beet bulbs in foil and roast at 350F for 20 minutes. Add to risotto half way through the cooking.
Wine note: Adding the Leeuwin Art Series Shiraz to the risotto gives it a smooth but peppery richness that enhances the sweetness of the pear and the creaminess of the risotto. Enjoy the wine’s dark berry and spice with the risotto’s lemon and fennel flavors – a great match.
recipe compliments of Leeuwin Estate winery