Paolo's Risotto

Hawke's Bay, North Island, New Zealand

Hawke's Bay is famous for its stunning wine, beautiful weather, cycle trails and abundance of local produce. So let head chef Paolo Pancotti, from Molto Italian Kitchen, show you how to create his local risotto dish using Hawke's Bay apples, goat cheese, walnut, marjoram and pea tendrils. 

About Hawke's Bay

Hawke’s Bay is one of New Zealand’s warmest, driest regions and this has made it one of the country’s leading producers of wine. The region is famous for its abundance of fresh locally grown delicacies, where many travellers come to indulge in artisan gourmet food.
You can also make the most of your time here by soaking in the great outdoors. We recommend walking the forest trails of the Ruahine and Kaweka Forest Parks, visit the Cape Kidnappers gannet colony or relax on the glorious beaches that stretch along the coast. 

Risotto with Hawke's Bay Apples, Goats Cheese, Walnuts, Marjoram & Pea Tendrills.

When it comes to eating and drinking options, you can't go wrong with Hawke's fine local produce. No matter what your tastes, there’s plenty of great food and beautiful wines to enjoy. So, give Paolo's recipe a go, using the finest grown foods from the Hawke's Bay region!


Serves 2-3

2 shallots, finely chopped 

3 celery sticks, finely diced

1 small red chilli, finely sliced (optional)

2 green or red crispy apples, cored, sliced to a matchstick size, tossed in lemon juice

3 T extra virgin olive oil

2 cups Carnaroli or Arborio rice

1lt vegetable stock

½ cup dry white wine

1 bunch of fresh marjoram or thyme, roughly chopped

½ cup walnuts, toasted

200g goat’s feta cheese (omits for vegans)

50gr unsalted butter

80gr Grana Padano cheese, grated

 1 cup pea tendrils

Step 1 - 3

Put the stock in a pot and bring to boil, turn down and keep hot.

In a medium-size pot, heat the EVOO over a low heat, add the shallots, celery and chilli if using, slowly cook over a low heat for 5 minutes until onion and celery are soft and translucent.

Add the rice and toss in the oil and onion mixture, coating well till the rice heats up, add the wine and cook until all the wine has been absorbed.

Step 4 - 6

Add a ladle or two of hot stock, stirring the rice until the liquid is almost absorbed, add another ladle and continue to stir ,cook the risotto adding a ladle of the stock each time the rice has absorbed the liquid, until the rice is al dente or tender and starting to turn creamy.


The risotto should look still a bit loose at this stage it will take approximately 15/18 mins. Take the risotto off the heat, the marjoram (thyme), butter and Grana Padano, gently fold it through till the risotto looks nice and creamy.



 Adjust the flavour with some seasoning if required. Serve the risotto topped with the apple, toasted walnuts, goat’s feta, pea tendrils and drizzled of EVOO.

Time to plate up! Serve with some quick pickles vegetables and greens on side!

Book your adventure with Mighway!

Now that you’ve got this exclusive recipe using the best produce from Hawke's Bay, you’ll enjoy cooking this incredible dish. So, get the best of both worlds with experiencing the Hawke's Bay region and it’s local food, by booking your next culinary roadie with Mighway. 

While a wildly popular vacation destination in the summer, come winter as things have wound down you can get the rare and compelling look at the true beauty of Hawke's Bay and its people. Life is more relaxed this time of year. The picture-perfect views along the seaside are stunning. Without the tourist-packed crowds, you can really take in the scope and the beauty of Hawke's Bay and the surrounding areas, from the Sugar Loaf Reserve to the snowy landscapes of the Ruahine Range.

Hawke’s Bay in the summer is a beautiful location, but Hawke’s Bay in the fall is an explosion of color as the leaves begin to turn. The landscape changes from vibrant greens to rich, reds, yellows, golds and every shade of brown. Hawke’s Bay also boasts an impressive variety of Art Deco architecture from the 1930s that has made it famous over the years for these impressive structures. With the colder days on the Bay, life moves a bit slower. But the highest quality of service is still maintained to visitors. The people of Hawke’s Bay are polite and happy to share this beautiful land with you during your visit

So, book a camper with Mighway, and let the journey unfold!

Make your way to Hawke's Bay!

Watch our episode of On the Road Recipes, Hawke's Bay!

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