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."
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