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.

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.

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.

O Tama Carey's fried eggs with seeni sambol, coconut and turmeric

"I first cooked a version of this dish - inspired by the excellent deep-fried egg dish at Billy Kwong - while working at a restaurant in Sri Lanka," says O Tama Carey. "The lattice-like eggs are doused in a creamy turmeric curry sauce and topped with seeni sambol, a sweet-spiced caramelised onion relish. This dish is equally perfect for an indulgent breakfast as it is served as part of a larger meal." The recipe for the seeni sambol makes more than you need, but to get the right balance of spices you need to make at least this much. It keeps refrigerated for up to three weeks; use as an onion relish. The curry sauce can be made a day or two ahead.

Smoked ham hock, caramelised onion and lentil soup


You'll need

2 carrots 2 celery stalks 1 smoked ham hock (about 450gm) 1 leek, white part only, thinly sliced 2 fresh bay leaves 1 thyme sprig 200 gm small green lentils 150 gm butter, coarsely chopped 1½ tbsp olive oil 4 onions, thinly sliced 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped 50 ml verjuice ¼ cup (loosely packed) sage, coarsely torn 200 ml pouring cream To serve: crusty bread

Method

  • 01
  • Coarsely chop half the carrot and half the celery, combine with hock, leek, bay leaves, thyme and 1.5 litres water in a large saucepan over medium heat and simmer until hock is tender (2½-3 hours). Remove hock, set aside to cool (30 minutes), then coarsely shred meat (discard skin and bones) and refrigerate until required. Strain 1.7 litres stock (discard solids; reserve remaining liquid for another use), refrigerate until chilled (4 hours) and skim fat (discard).
  • 02
  • Meanwhile, cook lentils in a saucepan of simmering water over medium heat until tender (15-25 minutes), drain and set aside.
  • 03
  • Heat butter and oil in a casserole over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and stir occasionally until golden (30-35 minutes). Finely chop remaining carrot and celery, add to pan and stir occasionally until tender (10-12 minutes). Deglaze with verjuice, add lentils, 1.5 litres stock, half the sage and three-quarters of the reserved ham and simmer to develop flavours (1 hour). Blend in a blender until smooth, stir in cream and season to taste. Heat remaining stock in a small saucepan over medium heat, add remaining ham and warm through (2-3 minutes). Scatter soup with warmed ham and remaining sage and serve hot with crusty bread.
This recipe is from the August 2012 issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller.

“The Blue Swimmer’s smoky ham and lentil soup is one of my favourite winter dishes. Would you please print the recipe?”
Matthew Langer, Kiama, NSW

Request a recipe
To request a recipe, write to Fare Exchange, Australian Gourmet Traveller, GPO Box 4088, Sydney, NSW 2001, or email us. All requests should include the restaurant’s name and address or business card, as well as your name and address.


At A Glance

  • Serves 4 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 4 people

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