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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. 

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.

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.

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.

A festival of cheese hits Sydney

Kick off winter with a week of cheese tasting.

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.

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.

Pea and ham soup

Tiramisú layer cakes


You'll need

65 gm softened butter 110 gm (½ cup) raw caster sugar 1 egg 110 gm plain flour ½ tsp baking powder 30 ml espresso coffee 30 ml milk To serve: Dutch-process cocoa   Espresso syrup 110 gm (½ cup) raw caster sugar 70 ml espresso 40 ml Tia Maria or chocolate liqueur   Whipped mascarpone 2 egg yolks 40 gm raw caster sugar 400 gm mascarpone

Method

  • 01
  • Preheat oven to 170C. Beat butter and sugar in an electric mixer until pale and fluffy (2-3 minutes). Add egg, beat well. Sift over flour and baking powder, stir to combine, add espresso and milk and stir to combine. Spread in a greased and baking paper-lined 26cm x 35cm baking tray, smoothing top. Bake until golden and cake springs back when lightly pressed with fingertip (15-20 minutes), cool completely on a wire rack.
  • 02
  • Meanwhile, for espresso syrup, stir sugar and espresso in a small saucepan over medium-high heat until sugar dissolves. Bring to the boil, remove from heat, stir in liqueur, cool to room temperature and set aside.
  • 03
  • Meanwhile, for whipped mascarpone, whisk egg yolks and sugar in a bowl until pale and creamy (1-2 minutes), add mascarpone. Whisk until thick and smooth (don’t overwhisk), spoon into a piping bag (no nozzle), refrigerate until required.
  • 04
  • To assemble, place six 6cm-high, 5.5cm-diameter cake rings (see note) on a baking paper-lined tray. Cut eighteen 5.5cm-diameter rounds from cake and place a cake round in the base of each mould. Brush with syrup, pipe a 5mm layer of whipped mascarpone on top. Dust with cocoa, top with another cake round and brush with syrup. Repeat until you’ve used all cake rounds, finishing with a layer of mascarpone. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours.
  • 05
  • To serve, run a small knife dipped in hot water around rings and remove. Dust tops of cakes with cocoa, serve immediately with extra espresso syrup if desired. Cakes will keep for up to 3 days in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Note Cake rings are available from specialty cookware stores. If unavailable, assemble the cakes as a slab and cut into small squares. To do this, trim edges of cake, then cut crossways into thirds. Layer as per recipe and refrigerate until firm before cutting into smaller cakes.


At A Glance

  • Serves 6 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 6 people

Featured in

Apr 2009

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