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.

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.

Moon Park to open Paper Bird in Potts Point

No, it’s not a pop-up. The team behind Sydney’s Moon Park is back with an all-day east-Asian eatery.

A festival of cheese hits Sydney

Kick off winter with a week of cheese tasting.

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.

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.

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.

Mole chichilo with chicken (chichilo con pollo)


"Pilar Cabrera owns a cooking school in Oaxaca, Mexico, and during our filming I was lucky enough to learn this exciting recipe from her," says Peter Kuruvita. "It's unique and shows that mole, meaning "concoction", does not always have to contain chocolate and chilli; in fact, the most famous mole in the world is guacamole."

You'll need

1 small skinless chicken (about 1kg), jointed 1 white onion, halved 8 cloves garlic (4 unpeeled) 8 baby red potatoes (400gm), halved 1 choko (350gm), peeled, halved, seeded, cut into 1cm slices 100 gm green beans, trimmed 6 dried pasilla chillies (see note) 6 dried chilhuacle chillies (see note) 4 corn tortillas 5 canned tomatillos, peeled 3 avocado leaves (see note) ½ tsp mixed dried aromatic herbs (marjoram, thyme, oregano) ½ tsp cumin seeds 1 each allspice and clove 250 gm (1 cup) fresh corn masa, crumbled (see note) 40 gm pork lard, or vegetable oil To serve: lime cheeks

Method

  • 01
  • Place the chicken, an onion half, unpeeled garlic, 1 tsp of salt and 4 cups water in a medium saucepan over high heat, bring to the boil, then lower heat and simmer until chicken is cooked through (20-25 minutes). Strain and set aside the chicken and the broth separately.
  • 02
  • Boil potatoes (10-12 minutes), choko (6-8 minutes) and beans (3-4 minutes) in a saucepan over medium heat until tender; use a slotted spoon to remove vegetables as each is cooked. Set aside.
  • 03
  • Wipe pasilla and chilhuacle chillies with a damp cloth to remove any dust. Pull the stems off and cut a slit down the length of each chilli. Open the chillies, scrape out the seeds and reserve. Pull out the veins and discard. Heat a heavy skillet over medium heat until hot. Add the chillies and toast lightly for 30 seconds on each side or until they change colour slightly. Transfer chillies to a bowl and cover with hot water (about 3 cups), and soak until they become soft and flexible (about 5 minutes), then drain. Transfer chillies to a blender with 250ml of the chicken broth, blend until smooth, then set aside.
  • 04
  • Meanwhile, in the same pan, toast the chilli seeds until black (3-4 minutes). Set aside in a bowl. Next toast the tortillas in batches until blackened, pressing with the back of a metal spatula and turning occasionally (7-10 minutes). Break them into pieces and set aside in the bowl. Next place the tomatillos, remaining garlic and remaining onion in the pan and roast until almost completely charred (7-9 minutes). As each is done, set aside in the bowl.
  • 05
  • Turn off the heat under the pan and place the avocado leaves, dried herbs, cumin seeds, allspice and clove in the pan until fragrant (1 minute). Set the avocado leaves aside separately. Put all the remaining spices in the bowl with the tomatillos. Transfer the tomatillo mixture to a blender with 250ml chicken broth and blend until smooth. Set aside.
  • 06
  • Process the corn masa in the blender with 250ml chicken broth until puréed. Set aside.
  • 07
  • Heat lard in a heavy-based 4-litre saucepan over medium heat until starting to smoke. Pour in the chilli purée and tomatillo purée. Bring to a high heat. Add the masa purée by pouring it through a sieve into the hot purée (discard lumps). Whisk until incorporated. Add the avocado leaves. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the mixture has the consistency of a cream sauce (10 minutes). Adjust the consistency with extra chicken broth or water (about 1 cup) if necessary. Season to taste with salt and add the chicken and vegetables. Heat until the oil rises to the top and serve hot with lime cheeks to the side.

Note Pasilla chillies are available dried from Herbie's Spices, The Essential Ingredient and Monterey Mexican Foods. Chilhuacle chillies are a speciality of Oaxaca and not available in Australia, so substitute guajillo chillies. If fresh masa is unavailable, use prepared masa from dried masa harina, available from Mexican food stores and selected delicatessens. 


At A Glance

  • Serves 4 - 6 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 4 - 6 people

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