• 15ml butter
  • 15ml olive oil
  • 3 small leeks, trimmed and thinly sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 400g mixed mushrooms,
  • large ones sliced, or small ones left whole
  • 5ml fresh thyme leaves, chopped
  • 250g Arborio rice (for risotto)
  • 80ml dry white wine (optional)
  • 750ml vegetable or chicken stock
  • 125g bacon, cooked and diced (optional)
  • 100g baby spinach leaves
  • 5ml finely grated lemon zest
  • 30g Parmesan cheese, finely grated


  • Parmesan cheese, finely grated


  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  2. Heat the butter and oil in a large pan. Gently fry the leeks and garlic over a low heat for 5–7 minutes, or until soft.
  3. Stir in the mushrooms and thyme. Cook, stirring constantly for 3–4 minutes, or until the mushrooms are soft.
  4. Increase the heat and stir in the rice, stirring until all of the grains are coated in the mushroom mixture.
  5. Add the wine, if using, and cook, stirring, for 2–3 minutes or until the liquid has evaporated. Stir in the stock and bring to the boil. Transfer the mixture to an ovenproof casserole, cover and bake in the oven for 15–20 minutes.
  6. Stir in the cooked bacon, baby spinach and bake for another 5 minutes.
  7. Stir in the lemon zest and Parmesan cheese. Set aside and leave covered for about 2 minutes.
  8. Serve hot with finely grated Parmesan cheese.

COOK’S NOTE This dish makes a hearty main meal. Alternatively, serve it with a green salad as a side dish to a crisp, roast chicken. 

(Serves 4)