Healthy Eating

We're championing fresh food that packs a flavour punch, from salads and vegetable-packed bowls to grains and light desserts.

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Aløft

There's nothing new about Nordic interiors - blond timbers, concrete surfaces, warm, mid-century charm without the twee - and thank heavens for that. It's a style that augments the beauty of everything around it, in this case, gorgeous Hobart harbour, which makes up one whole wall. What is new here, however, is the food - by veterans of Garagistes, which once dazzled diners down the road, Vue de Monde in Melbourne and Gordon Ramsay worldwide. There's a strong Asian bent, but with Tasmanian ingredients. In fact, the kitchen's love of the local verges on obsessive - coconut milk in an aromatic fish curry is replaced with Tasmanian-grown fig leaf simmered in cream to mimic the flavour. Other standouts include a gutsy red-braised lamb with gai lan and chewy cassia spaetzle, pigs' ears zingy with Sichuan pepper and a fresh, springy berry dessert. While the food is sourced locally, the generous wine list spans the planet. 

Secret Tuscany

A far cry from Tuscany’s familiar gently rolling hills, Monte Argentario’s appealing mix of mountain, ocean, island and lagoon makes it one of Italy’s hidden treasures, writes Emiko Davies.

A festival of cheese hits Sydney

Kick off winter with a week of cheese tasting.

Farro recipes

Farro can be used in almost any dish, from a robust salad to accompany hearty beer-glazed beef short ribs to a new take on risotto with mushrooms, leek and parmesan. Here are 14 ways with this versatile grain.

Brae

Prepare to enter a picture of the countryside framed by note-perfect Australiana but painted in bold, elegant and unsentimental strokes. Over 10 or more courses, Dan Hunter celebrates his region with dishes that are formally daring (Crunchy prawn heads! Creamy oyster soft-serve! Sea urchin and chicory bread pudding!), yet rich in flavour and substance. The menu could benefit from an edit, but the plates are tightly composed - and what could you cut? Certainly not the limpid broth bathing fronds of abalone and calamari, nor the clever arrangement of lobster played off against charred waxy fingerlings under a swatch of milk skin. The adventure is significantly the richer for the cool gloss of the dining room, some of the most engaging service in the nation and wine pairings that roam with an easy-going confidence. Maturing and relaxing without surrendering a drop of its ambition, Brae is more compelling than ever.

Grilled apricot salad with jamon and Manchego

Here we've scorched apricots on the grill and served them with torn jamon, shaved Manchego and peppery rocket leaves. Think of it as a twist on the good old melon-prosciutto routine. The mixture would also be great served on charred sourdough.

Discovering Macedonia

Like its oft-disputed name, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia defies simple definition but its rich diversity extends from the dinner table to the welcoming locals, writes Richard Cooke.

2017 Australian Hotel Awards: The Finalists

This year's finalists across 11 different categories include established and new hotels, all with particular areas of excellence. Stay tuned to find out which hotels will take the top spots when they're announced at a ceremony at QT Melbourne on Wednesday 24 May, and published in our 2017 Australian Hotel Guide, on sale Thursday 25 May.

Four ways with a tin of anchovies

Fried cauliflower with anchovy mayonnaise

Fried cauliflower with anchovy mayonnaise

Packed in salt or preserved in oil, these little fish make a big splash in the flavour stakes.

Anchovies are either loathed or loved - you can't be lukewarm about an anchovy. At GT, we are firmly in the "for" camp. A couple of tins of anchovies in the pantry take up very little space, but despite their diminutive size, they pack a serious flavour punch. They add deep savouriness to all sorts of dishes and can be employed in a subtle manner or made the star of the show.

We often add them when sautéeing onion and garlic as the foundation of a dish - an anchovy or two adds a certain something to proceedings, melting away to invisibility, yet leaving their flavoursome mark. We also love to place them centrestage - spiking a lemony, garlicky mayo to serve alongside fried cauliflower, say, or in a take on the classic pissaladière.

Not all anchovies are created equal. Quality is important here, especially in dishes where the anchovies are front and centre. We love the beautifully intense, salt-packed Nardin anchovies (the oil-preserved version is a winner, too), and other brands packed in Spain's Basque country.

The salt-packed ones require a little more fiddling around - they need to have the salt brushed off, be butterflied and the spine taken out, whereas the better oil-packed anchovies are ready to eat. Good anchovies tend to hold their shape well rather than turn to mush, which is why, in our book, paying a little extra is money well spent. They're so good we can (and often do) scoff them straight from the can.

Fried cauliflower with anchovy mayonnaise
Serves 4 as a snack
Process 8 anchovy fillets, 2 egg yolks, 1 tsp Dijon mustard and 1 garlic clove in a food processor until smooth and combined. With the motor running, add 200ml olive oil in a thin steady stream, processing until thick and emulsified. Add 1 tbsp red wine vinegar and a squeeze of lemon juice to taste, process to combine, adjust seasoning and set aside. Heat 2cm olive oil in a large frying pan, add trimmed florets of 1 cauliflower without overcrowding the pan and shallow-fry until golden brown and tender (3-4 minutes; you may need to do this in batches). Drain on paper towels, season to taste with sea salt, freshly ground black pepper and smoked paprika, and serve with lemon wedges and anchovy mayonnaise.

Slow-roasted lamb leg with anchovies and rosemary
Serves 4-6
Preheat oven to 140C. Take a lamb leg (bone-in, about 2.75kg) and cut 16 small deep incisions at even intervals. Stuff each incision with an anchovy fillet, a couple of rosemary leaves and a halved garlic clove, place in a roasting pan, drizzle with olive oil, season to taste and add 250ml each dry white wine and chicken stock to the pan. Roast, basting occasionally and topping up roasting pan with extra stock if necessary, until very tender and falling from the bone (3½-4 hours). Cover with foil and rest for 20 minutes, then serve with pan juices and lemon roast potatoes.

Onion and anchovy tart
Serves 4
Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat, add 3 very thinly sliced onions and sauté until very soft and caramelised (45-50 minutes). Stir in 1 tbsp coarsely chopped thyme and 1 finely chopped garlic clove, season to taste and set aside to cool. Preheat oven to 200C. Cut a 375gm sheet of butter puff pastry into four squares, place on a baking tray lined with baking paper and score a 1cm border around the edge of each. Prick within the border with a fork, then spread with onion mixture. Place 4 anchovy fillets in a criss-cross pattern and scatter 4 pitted black olives over each tart, then bake until golden and crisp (15-20 minutes). Serve hot, scattered with extra thyme.

Quick anchovy and roast capsicum bruschetta
Serves 4 as a snack
Combine 200gm peeled roasted red capsicum torn into strips in a bowl with 12 anchovy fillets, 1 tbsp olive oil, 1 tbsp red wine vinegar, 1 finely chopped garlic clove and 2 tbsp each coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley and oregano, season to taste and mix well. Drizzle eight thick slices of sourdough with a little extra oil, toast both sides in a char-grill pan and serve topped with roast capsicum and anchovy mixture.

Hot tips
+ Once a jar or can of anchovies is opened, store in the refrigerator for up to a week.
+ It may seem obvious to say, but when cooking with anchovies remember they're salty so be judicious when seasoning the dish.

After more from these salty saviours? Try our anchovy recipe collection.

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2017 Restaurant Guide

Our 2017 Restaurant Guide is online, covering over 400 restaurants Australia wide. Never wonder where to dine again.

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