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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. 

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.

A festival of cheese hits Sydney

Kick off winter with a week of cheese tasting.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

Charred eggplant dip with quick quinoa crackers


You'll need

2 large eggplant 1 garlic clove, crushed 2 tsp hulled tahini Juice of 1 lemon 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil To serve: plain yoghurt and coriander   Quick quinoa crackers 200 gm (1 cups) plain flour 1 tbsp black quinoa

Method

  • 01
  • Preheat oven to 220C. Cook eggplants over a medium flame either on a rack on a gas cooktop or on a barbecue, turning occasionally, until charred and tender (15-20 minutes). Halve and drain flesh-side down in a colander.
  • 02
  • For quick quinoa crackers, combine flour, 100ml water and a large pinch of salt in a bowl and knead until smooth. Knead in quinoa and divide into 4 pieces. Roll through a pasta machine, starting at widest setting, then reduce notch by notch until dough is 4mm-thick. Place on 2 oven trays lined with baking paper and bake until golden (10-15 minutes). Set aside to cool, then break into rough crackers and sprinkle with sea salt flakes (optional).
  • 03
  • Scoop out half the eggplant and purée in a food processor with garlic, tahini and lemon juice. Season generously and drizzle with oil. Scoop remaining eggplant from skins (discard skins) into a bowl, mash coarsely with a fork, mix in puréed eggplant, top with a dollop of yoghurt, scatter with coriander and serve with quinoa crackers.

At A Glance

  • Serves 4 - 6 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 4 - 6 people

Featured in

Dec 2013

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