Risotto of Moreton Bay Bug

Enjoy Mandy’s on the Mountain’s Risotto of Moreton Bay Bug in your own home with this recipe courtesy of Chef Ivan Butera.

The delicate flavour of Moreton Bay bug combines with a vodka and cream base in the risotto, which is finished with red radicchio and a spoonful of colourful fish eggs.


  • 10 cooked bugs
  • 3 litres water
  • 3 carrots, sliced
  • 2 sticks celery, sliced
  • 1 red tomato, diced
  • 1 spanish onion, sliced
  • 150g butter
  • 2 banana shallots* chopped finely
  • Zest of ½ lemon
  • 3 cloves
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 400g Arborio rice
  • ½ cup radicchio julienned
  • 75ml thick cream
  • 80ml vodka
  • 1 tablespoon Hungarian paprika**
  • Edible flowers
  • ½ cup Italian parsley chopped
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 100 fish caviar


  • Peel the cooked bugs and dice the meat of five.
  • Use the heads and shells to make a stock with the water, carrots, tomato, celery and onion. Simmer over low heat for 15 minutes, season with salt and pepper.
  • In a medium shallow pot with a thick bottom, gently sauté the banana shallots with the cloves, bay leaves, lemon zest and 100g of butter until the shallots are transparent.
  • Add the paprika and the diced bug meat. Deglaze the pan with the vodka, add the rice and mix everything well.
  • Using a ladle, add the stock gradually until the rice absorbs the liquid and continue to cook until the rice is al dente.
  • When the rice is cooked, add the cream, radicchio and parsley.
  • Mix everything well and plate.
  • Garnish with the edible flowers and the five whole bug meat tails.
  • To finish, add a splash of extra virgin olive oil and spoonful of fish caviar to each plate.

If this recipe really hits the spot, read our recent review to learn more about the delicious flavours of Mandy’s on the Mountain.

* Banana shallots are a cross between a regular shallot and an onion. They are larger than an onion, but with the mildness and sweetness of a shallot.

** Hungarian paprika has a fruity, sweet pepper flavour without heat.

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