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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.

Fried pastries with orange-scented honey


You'll need

50 ml dessert wine 25 gm butter, coarsely chopped 25 gm lard 300 gm (2 cups) plain flour For deep-frying: sunflower oil For dusting: icing sugar, sieved   Orange-scented honey 200 gm honey 50 ml dessert wine 1 orange, thinly zested rind and juice only

Method

  • 01
  • Combine wine, butter, lard and 175ml water in a small saucepan and warm over medium-high heat until fats melt. Add flour and a pinch of sea salt, remove pan from heat and stir until smooth. Turn onto a lightly floured work surface, knead until soft and smooth (2-3 minutes), form into a ball, wrap in plastic wrap and rest at room temperature for 1-2 hours.
  • 02
  • Meanwhile, for orange-scented honey, combine honey, wine, rind and juice in a small saucepan with 80ml water. Simmer until rind is tender (8-10 minutes), set aside.
  • 03
  • Roll out pastry on a lightly floured work surface to 2mm thick, then cut into 15cm x 8cm rectangles. With shortest side facing you and starting at one corner, roll each rectangle into a cylinder, then wet each end with water and bring together to form a wreath shape, set aside.
  • 04
  • Preheat oil in a deep-fryer or deep-sided saucepan to 180C. Deep-fry pastries in batches until golden (4-5 minutes; be careful as hot oil may spit), drain on absorbent paper. Dust with icing sugar and serve hot or at room temperature, drizzled with orange-scented honey.

At A Glance

  • Serves 15 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 15 people

Featured in

Oct 2009

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