The February issue

Our clean eating issue is out now, packed with super lunch bowls, gluten-free desserts and more - including our cruising special, covering all luxury on the seas.

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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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

Mascarpone

Otway Forest Shiitake mushrooms

Victorian know-how plus Japanese mushrooms equals delicious results.

WHO In Japan shiitake mushrooms grow on logs of shii, a native evergreen. As we don't have much in the way of shii trees in Australia, Victorian shiitake mushroom grower Rob Wertheimer, part of a sustainable agroforestry community in the green hills of the Otway Ranges on Victoria's west coast, uses blue gum and sugar gum logs from neighbours' farms to grow his fungus with winning results.

HOW The logs are inoculated with shiitake fungus spores then left in cool, damp greenhouses, and nine months later the mushrooms emerge. The majority of the shiitakes are delivered directly to top restaurants (Brae, Flower Drum, The Bridge Room and Cutler & Co among them), but some make it to the retail market. The less-than-perfect specimens are dried, ground and blended with organic sea salt to make a rather excellent, umami-packed condiment that's perfect for sprinkling over a chicken before roasting.

WHY The mushrooms have a firm texture, but their skin has an unctuous quality, which makes them ideal for soaking up any sauce they're sitting in. They can take a good whack of butter, say, while maintaining the rich fungal flavour and subtle, complex scent of the cool, damp forests in which the logs once grew.

WHERE Otway Forest Shiitake mushrooms are available fresh in season (to the end of April) at Georgie's Harvest at the South Melbourne Market. The mushrooms are $7.50 for 100gm; the dried shiitake salt is $15 for 70gm. 

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