The February issue

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Curtis Stone's strawberry, elderflower and brioche summer puddings

"Think of this dessert as a deconstructed version of a summer pudding, with thinly sliced strawberries macerated in elderflower liqueur and layered between slices of brioche," says Stone. "A dollop of whipped cream on top is a cooling counterpoint to the floral flavours."

Most popular recipes summer 2017

Counting down from 20, here are this summer's most-loved recipes.

Fig recipes

Figs. We can't get enough of them. Here are a few sweet and savoury ways to add them to your summer spread.

Australia's best rieslings

We’re spoilt for variety – and value – in Australia when it comes to good riesling. Max Allen picks the top 20 from a fine crop.

Chorizo hotdogs with chimichurri and smoky red relish

A hotdog is all about the condiments. Here, choose between a smoky red capsicum relish or the bright flavours of chimichurri, or go for a bit of both.

Top Australian chefs to follow on Instagram in 2017

A lot has changed since we first published our pick of the best chefs to follow on Instagram (way back in the dark ages of 2013). Here’s who we’re double-tapping on the photo-sharing app right now.

Christine Manfield recipes

As the '90s dawned, darling chefs were pushing the boundaries of cooking in this country. A young Christine Manfield, just starting out at this heady time, soon became part of the generation that redefined modern Australian cuisine. She shares some of her timeless signatures from the era.

Curtis Stone's strawberry and almond cheesecake

"I've made all kinds of fancy cheesecakes in my time, but nothing really beats the classic combination of strawberries and almonds with a boost from vanilla bean," says Stone. "I could just pile macerated strawberries on top, but why not give your tastebuds a proper party by folding grilled strawberries into the cheesecake batter too? Cheesecakes are elegant and my go-to for celebrations because they taste best when whipped up a day in advance."

GT reader dinner: Lûmé, Melbourne

John Paul Fiechtner and Shaun Quade

John Paul Fiechtner and Shaun Quade

"Sea corn and dairy cow", "meat hen in chamomile" - Shaun Quade and John Paul Fiechtner don't like to give too much away, judging by the menu at their new South Melbourne restaurant, Lûmé. "We're a fine-dining restaurant, but I hate calling it that," says Quade. "We like playing around with people's perceptions a little more than what's expected."

Technique and imagination are the most valuable players at Lûmé, which should come as no surprise, given the time Quade clocked at Quay and Biota, and Fiechtner spent at Le Chateaubriand in Paris and Hong Kong's Bo Innovation.

"A lot of people are scared of technique-driven food," says Fiechtner. "For us flavour always comes first, and then we play around with it."

For this month's Fine Dining Lovers' reader dinner, Lûmé presents a five-course tasting menu (with a few surprises in between), alongside matching wines chosen by sommelier Sally Humble.

A dish of emu and pearl is a playful start, with pearl meat mimicking a dinosaur's egg, the emu cured with salt and miso. Chamomile-brined chicken is up next, followed by Lûmé's "more Australian" version of a deconstructed black pudding, using lamb's blood along with native Tanami apples and their skins.

And to end the evening? A simple piece of nutmeg, of course. Well, we wouldn't be too sure.

Join us for dinner at 6.30pm on Monday 28 September at Lûmé, 226 Coventry St, South Melbourne, Vic. The cost of $150 per person includes five-plus courses, wines by the glass, Sanpellegrino water and a $10 donation to the Ovarian Cancer Research Foundation. To book, call (03) 9690 0142. For more on the OCRF, call 1300 OVARIAN or visit ocrf.com.au.

Lûmé menu
* Sour brioche
* Spelt pretzel

* Emu and pearl
Uehara Shuzo "Soma no Tengu" Usunigori, Shiga, Japan

* Sea corn and dairy cow
2011 Bannockburn Chardonnay, Geelong

* Artichoke and praline

* Meat hen cooked in chamomile
1999 Nakano BC "Chokyu" Koshu, Wakayama, Japan

* Lamb's blood ganache
Custard & Co barrel-aged, special-release apple cider liqueur

* Artichoke and praline

* Cacao pod from Maralumi
Simão & Co Vintage Fortified, Rutherglen

* A simple piece of nutmeg

SPONSORED BY FINE DINING LOVERS

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