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Top 35 recipes of 2016

2016 was all about slow-roasting, fresh pasta and comfort food. These are the recipes you clicked on most this year, counting back to number one.

Christmas vegetarian recipes

The versatility of vegetarian dishes means they can be served alongside meat and seafood, or enjoyed simply as they are. With Christmas just around the corner, we’ve put together some of our favourite vegetarian recipes to appease both herbivores and carnivores alike.

Decadent chocolate dessert recipes for Christmas

13 of our most decadent chocolate recipes to indulge guests with this Christmas.

Best travel destinations in 2017

We're thinking big for travelling in 2017 - and so should you. Will we see you sunrise at Java's 9th-century Borobudur Buddhist temple, across the table at Reykjavik's newest restaurants or swimming side-by-side with humpback whales off Western Australia's coast?

Chilled recipes for summer

When the mercury is rising, step away from the oven. These recipes are either raw, chilled or frozen and will cool you down in a snap.

What the GT team is cooking on Christmas Day

We don't do things by halves in the Gourmet office. These are the recipes we'll be cooking on the big day.

Summer feta recipes

Whether in a fresh salad or seasonal seafood dish, feta's creamy tang can be used to add interest to a variety of summer dishes.

Christmas ham recipes

The centrepiece of any Christmas feast, hams can be glazed with many ingredients. Here are our favourite combinations.

How to pickle fruit and vegetables

Hugh Wennerbom

Hugh Wennerbom

I'm keen to get in on this pickling thing, Hugh. Where's a good place to start?

Plums and pears are annual staples at our place simply because they dominate our garden. New this year, though, are pickled sour grapes (an emotionally confused condiment if ever there was one). They came about when a nearby friend and vigneron was thinning unripe bunches of grapes on his pinot vines. Pickled, they're a knockout. The basic recipe for pickled fruit is a 1:1 syrup of sugar to vinegar (I prefer raw sugar and apple cider vinegar), brought to the boil with spices (allspice, cloves and cinnamon are basic). Do the fruit in the syrup in small batches to ensure that the fruit is cooked through (and pasteurised), but not collapsing and mushy.

If the fruit overcooks, just purée it and turn it into a sauce. Pickling the likes of fennel and fungi calls for a seasoned vinegar rather than a syrup. Pasteurise the sliced-diced vegetables either by blanching or baking. Season the vinegar with salt, pepper, caster sugar, garlic, bay, thyme and dried chilli, bring to a boil, then simmer for five minutes. Pack vegetables into sterilised jars and pour on the hot vinegar. Top each jar with a tablespoon of olive oil and you're done.

Illustration Lauren Haire

Want more ideas for pickling? Check out our collection of pickle and preserve recipes.

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