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.

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.

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.

Spicy chicken laksa


"With so many Malaysian joints in Sydney touting the best-ever laksa, I was pleasantly surprised to find a true worthy contender at RD's Café. It's got all the elements that make this creamy soup such a favourite. Please ask Daxa Chauhan to share her recipe."
Millie So, Darlinghurst, NSW

Request a recipe
To request a recipe, write to Fare Exchange, Australian Gourmet Traveller, GPO Box 4088, Sydney, NSW 2001, or email us at fareexchange@bauer-media.com.au. All requests should include the restaurant's name and address or business card, as well as your name and address.

You'll need

750 ml (3 cups) chicken stock 375 ml (1½ cups) coconut cream 4 pieces (80gm) fried tofu cubes, thickly sliced 1 stalk of celery, thinly sliced on the diagonal 2 carrots, 1 halved and thinly sliced on the diagonal, the other cut into julienne 250 gm (about ¼) Chinese cabbage, coarsely chopped 1 bunch of baby bok choy, quartered 200 gm thick rice noodles 500 gm cooked chicken breast, thickly sliced 1 cup each of loosely packed Vietnamese mint and coriander leaves   Laksa paste ½ onion, coarsely chopped 2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped 1 tbsp coarsely chopped coriander leaves, stalks and roots 2 tsp finely grated ginger 2-3 small red chillies, coarsely chopped 1 lime, finely grated rind and juice only 2 tsp finely chopped lemon grass 1 tsp shrimp paste 1 tsp ground coriander ½ tsp ground turmeric 100 ml vegetable oil   Chilli sambal 50 gm small red chillies, coarsely chopped 50 gm garlic cloves, coarsely chopped 50 gm ginger, coarsely chopped 50 ml vegetable oil 2 tbsp vegetable stock powder 1 tsp each of fish and soy sauce 1 tsp brown sugar ½ tsp chilli flakes

Method

  • 01
  • For laksa paste, process all ingredients except oil in a food processor until a smooth paste forms. Heat oil in a non-stick frying pan over low heat, add paste and cook for 5 minutes or until fragrant or oil separates. Makes 1 cup. Paste will keep refrigerated in an airtight jar for up to 3 weeks.
  • 02
  • For chilli sambal, process chilli, garlic and ginger in a food processor until a smooth paste forms. Heat oil in a non-stick frying pan over low heat, add paste and cook for 5 minutes or until oil separates. Add remaining ingredients and stir to combine. Makes 2/3 cup. Sambal will keep refrigerated in an airtight jar for up to 3 weeks.
  • 03
  • In a large saucepan, combine chicken stock, ½ cup laksa paste, coconut cream and bring slowly to the boil. Reduce heat to a simmer, then add tofu.
  • 04
  • Bring a large saucepan of salted water to the boil, blanch celery, carrot, Chinese cabbage and baby bok choy separately, drain and set aside. Cook noodles according to packet instructions, drain and divide among bowls. Arrange vegetables and chicken on top, ladle over soup and scatter with carrot julienne and herbs. Serve immediately with chilli sambal passed separately.

At A Glance

  • Serves 4 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 4 people

Featured in

Dec 2006

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