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Leave no one behind this
World Food Day

World Food Day Recipe World Food Day is celebrated across the globe on Sunday, October 16, with the theme 'Leave No One Behind'. Over the past year, food prices have increased dramatically due to the domino effects of COVID-19. According to the Food and Agriculture organisation on the UN, 3.1 billion people cannot afford a healthy diet. To help ensure no one gets left behind, Le Cordon Bleu Melbourne chef and lecturer Mariano Velazquez has created a budget-friendly mushroom and VEGEMITE risotto which includes many pantry staples.

“Making a mushroom and VEGEMITE risotto for my friends and family is always a big success. The stock and rest of the ingredients can be prepared in advance and then put together easily. All ingredients are easy to find and relatively inexpensive, including pantry staple ingredients like rice, dried mushrooms and VEGEMITE," chef Mariano says.

“The secret of the dish is to incorporate a bit of VEGEMITE in the stock and then a little bit more at the end. It gives the risotto a very attractive colour, together with saltiness and umami flavour to the dish. Literally, you cannot stop eating it.”

This World Food Day, chef Mariano is encouraging everyone to buy their fresh produce locally.

“World Food Day should make us all reflect on everyone’s right to have a healthy hot meal. Starting with ourselves, buying local, fresh ingredients is the best way to help our farmers stay in business."

Mushroom and Vegemite Recipe

Wild Mushroom and VEGEMITE Risotto


For the stock
  • 1 kg button mushrooms (can be substituted with shiitake for a more intense flavour)
  • 100 g VEGEMITE
  • 2 brown onions
  • 2 carrots
  • 1 leek
  • 120 ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 bunch thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 3 peppercorns
  • 4 L cold water
For the risotto base
  • 600 g arborio rice
  • ½ head garlic, peeled and crushed
  • 200 g shallots, finely chopped
  • 200 g Swiss brown mushrooms
  • 200 g shiitake mushrooms
  • 100 g morel mushrooms
  • 100 g enoki mushrooms
  • 100 ml dry white wine
  • 2 L mushroom and VEGEMITE stock
  • 50 g VEGEMITE
  • 200 g mascarpone cheese
  • 100 g unsalted butter, diced
  • 40 ml extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper


For the stock

1. Dice the carrot, onion and leek.
2. Quarter the button mushrooms.
3. Place olive oil, mushrooms, onions, carrots and leek into a pot on low heat. Stir frequently until soft.
4. Add the thyme, bay leaves, peppercorns, cold water and VEGEMITE. Bring to boil, reduce the heat and then simmer, uncovered for 1 hour.
5. Strain through a fine sieve.

For the risotto base

6. Brunoise shallots and finely chop garlic
7. Wash and slice all the mushrooms.
8. Sauté shallots and 2/3 of the mushrooms in olive oil until soft, keeping 1/3 for the garnish.
9. Add arborio rice and cook for another 2 minutes until rice becomes transparent.
10. Add garlic and VEGEMITE, deglaze with white wine and cook for another minute.
11. Gradually add warm mushroom and VEGEMITE stock little by little, stirring continually until absorbed and the rice is al dente (approximately 16 to 18 minutes).
12. Stir through the diced butter and mascarpone cheese.
13. In a separate pan sauté the remaining 1/3 of the mushrooms.
14. Spread the risotto evenly over 8 serving plates.
15. Garnish with the sauteed mushroom mixture, pecorino cheese and micro leaves (also delicious with shaved black winter truffle if available). Enjoy!

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VEGEMITE contains Vitamins B1, B2, B3 and folate. Enjoy as part of a balanced, varied diet and active lifestyle. VEGEMITE, the VEGEMITE device, and the VEGEMITE trade dress are trademarks of Bega Cheese Limited, used under licence.