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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. 

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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.

Crumbed veal scaloppine with caponata


You'll need

12 veal scaloppine (about 120gm each) 200 ml milk 3 eggs, lightly beaten For dusting: seasoned plain flour 250 gm fine fresh breadcrumbs from ciabatta 120 ml olive oil 120 gm butter, coarsely chopped To serve: lemon wedges   Caponata 60 ml (¼ cup) extra-virgin olive oil 2 yellow capsicum, cut into 1cm dice 2 zucchini, cut into 1cm dice 1 Spanish onion, cut into 1cm dice 1 garlic clove, finely chopped 1 eggplant, cut into 1cm dice 4 small vine-ripened tomatoes (about 400gm), cut into wedges 2 tbsp tomato passata 60 ml (¼ cup) red wine vinegar 2 tbsp coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley 1 tsp finely chopped marjoram

Method

  • 01
  • Pound scaloppine with a meat mallet between two pieces of baking paper to 5mm thick. Whisk milk and eggs in a large bowl. Dip scaloppine first in seasoned flour, then egg mixture, then breadcrumbs, shaking off excess in between, then place on trays lined with baking paper and refrigerate until required.
  • 02
  • For caponata, heat half the olive oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat. Add capsicum, zucchini, onion and garlic, stir occasionally until golden (4-5 minutes), transfer to a bowl, set aside. Add remaining oil to pan, add eggplant and stir occasionally until golden (4-5 minutes). Drain on absorbent paper, combine with zucchini mixture and remaining ingredients, season to taste and set aside.
  • 03
  • Heat a quarter of the oil and a quarter of the butter in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add a quarter of the scaloppine and cook, turning once, until golden and cooked through (4-5 minutes). Wipe out pan and repeat with remaining, oil, butter and scaloppine. Season to taste and serve hot with caponata and lemon wedges.
This recipe is from the April 2012 issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller.

“I would love the recipe for the veal scaloppine from Melbourne’s Lupino.”
Gina Calpis, Melbourne, Vic

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At A Glance

  • Serves 6 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 6 people

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