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Grilled apricot salad with jamon and Manchego

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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.

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.

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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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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.

Hunter Valley NSW travel guide

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Squash risotto with Taleggio and oregano


You'll need

40 gm butter 4 golden shallots, finely chopped 4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced 280 gm risotto rice 60 ml dry white wine or vermouth 850 ml hot chicken stock 3 yellow squash, thinly sliced 2 zucchini, thinly sliced 2 tbsp crème fraîche 50 gm finely grated parmesan 140 gm Taleggio, broken into pieces 2 tbsp coarsely chopped oregano, to serve

Method

  • 01
  • Heat butter in a saucepan over medium-high heat, add shallots and garlic and stir occasionally until tender (5-7 minutes). Add rice and stir to toast (1-2 minutes). Add wine, stir occasionally until almost absorbed, then add hot stock a ladleful at a time, stirring continuously until stock is absorbed before adding more. Continue until all stock is incorporated, rice is al dente and risotto is creamy (10-15 minutes). Add squash and zucchini and cook until tender (10 minutes).
  • 02
  • Stir in crème fraîche and parmesan just before serving. Serve with dotted with Taleggio and scattered with oregano.

At A Glance

  • Serves 4 - 6 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 4 - 6 people

Featured in

Mar 2014

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