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The World's Best sommeliers are coming to Australia
28.03.2017

For the first time, the world's top international sommeliers will take part in the World's 50 Best Awards too.

Seven Italian dishes that shaped fine dining in the 2000s
28.03.2017

Italian food in the restaurants of Australia blossomed into maturity in the new millennium, as the work of these trailblazers shows – dazzling and diverse, a successful balance between adaptation and tradition.

Steam ovens: a guide
27.03.2017

Billed as the faster, cleaner way to cook, are these on-trend ovens all they’re cracked up to be? We take a close look at their rising popularity, USP versus the traditional convection cooker and how each type rates in terms of form, function, and above all, flavour in this buyer’s guide.

Our chocolate issue is out now
27.03.2017

Our April issue is out now. In his editor's letter, Pat Nourse walks you through what to expect.

Roast pork with Nelly Robinson
27.03.2017

Nelly Robinson of Sydney's nel. restaurant talks us through his favourite roasting joints, tips for crisp roast potatoes and why, when it comes to pork, slow and steady always wins the race.

Water carafes
24.03.2017

More than mere vessels, these pieces bring a cool breeze of style from the fridge to the table.

The benefits of live yoghurt
23.03.2017

Step away from the “dessert yoghurt", writes Will Studd. The real unadulterated thing is much more rewarding.

All-Star Yum Cha
22.03.2017

What happens the morning after the World’s 50 Best Restaurants awards? We treat the chefs to a world-beating yum cha session, as Dani Valent discovers.

Flour and Stone Recipes

Baker extraordinaire Nadine Ingram of Sydney's Flour and Stone cooks up a sweet storm for Easter, including the much loved bakery's greatest hit.

Fast autumn dinners

Autumn weather signals the arrival of soups, broths, roasts and more hearty meals.

Roasted cauliflower salad with yoghurt dressing and almonds

The cauliflower is roasted until it starts to caramelise, which adds extra depth of flavour to this winning salad. Serve it warm or at room temperature.

1980s recipes

Australia saw some bold moves in the ’80s, and we’re not just talking hairstyles. Greater cultural references started peppering the menus of our restaurants, and home-grown ingredients won a new appreciation. The dining scene was coming of age and a new band of pioneers led the charge.

New cruises 2017

Cue the Champagne.

All Star Yum Cha

What happens the morning after the World’s 50 Best Restaurants awards? We treat the chefs to a world-beating yum cha session, as Dani Valent discovers.

Melbournes finest meet Worlds Best

Leading chefs descend on Melbourne in April for The World’s 50 Best Restaurants. We asked local hospitality folk who they’d abduct for the day and where they’d take them to show off their city. There may be coffee, there may be culture, but in the end it’s cocktails.

Savoury tarts

Will your next baking project be a flaky puff pastry with pumpkin, goat's curd and thyme, or a classic bacon and Stilton tart? As autumn settles in, we're ticking these off one by one.

Meet the producers: Voodoo Bacon

Voodoo Bacon

Voodoo Bacon

It's bacon, but not as we normally know it: nitrate-free and dry-cured.

WHO Mississippi-born chef George Francisco has been busy finessing his bacon recipe since migrating to Australia in 2001. His aim? To recreate the intensely flavoured, southern-style, dry-cured smoked bacon he remembers from childhood. Last year, the expat left his executive chef role at Tower Estate in the Hunter Valley and relocated to sunny Noosa to set up Voodoo Bacon.

WHAT Each slab of bacon is handmade. Francisco sources bellies from free-range pigs from Ipswich in Queensland and applies a dry-cure of rock salt, brown sugar, juniper, thyme, garlic and assorted spices. The applewood used for smoking is from the Sunshine Coast. "As you cure, it gets salty, so you need smoke to get the balance right," says Francisco. "The applewood gives an equal amount of smoke, salt and sugar." Most commercial bacon is wet-cured to add bulk. Dry-curing takes longer and intensifies the flavour, but sheds around 40 per cent of the original piece of pork's weight. Francisco currently produces around 300 kilos per week, and his goal is to up it to 1,000 kilos. "I want to keep it artisanal." He cures his pork bellies skin-on for 10 to 15 days. "I've tried to reduce the salt level and change the recipe, but you just lose flavour."

WHY Voodoo bacon is nitrate-free. "There's nothing in there no one's not heard of," says Francisco. "Lots of bacon contains preservatives or they've used liquid smoke - you can smell that as soon as you open the packaging." He argues that with sell-by dates and refrigeration, there's no need for preservatives and we should get used to the natural colour of bacon, which turns brown when it's exposed to air. While Francisco sells it in super-thin slices for convenience, his preference is to sell it by the handbranded slab. "Nobody buys pre-sliced onions because they oxidise and taste bad, so why buy pre-sliced bacon?"

WHERE Voodoo Bacon is available wholesale at Vic's Premium Quality Meat Sydney and Melbourne. For retail, see Edgecliff's Gourmet Life, Victor Churchill and Vic's Meat Market at Sydney Fish Market. In Queensland, see Forest Glen's Kunara or Noosaville's Eumundi Meats. Customers can also order online from voodoobacon.com.au.

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Latest news
Seven Italian dishes that shaped fine dining in the 2000s
28.03.2017
Our chocolate issue is out now
27.03.2017
Honey Fingers, Melbourne's inner-city beekeepers
22.03.2017
Seven recipes that shaped 1980s fine dining
21.03.2017
What is aquafaba?
20.03.2017
Eight recipes from Flour and Stone
20.03.2017
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