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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.

Pigs’ ears with chilli, lime and fried egg


You'll need to begin this recipe a day ahead.

You'll need

8 pig’s ears (see note) 2 onions, quartered 1 each each celery stalk and carrot, coarsely chopped For deep-frying: vegetable oil 4 eggs 4 spring onions, thinly sliced   Chilli-lime sauce 165 ml (¾ cup) lime juice 70 gm (¼ cup) chilli garlic sauce (see note)

Method

  • 01
  • Bring pigs’ ears, onion, celery, carrot and 6 litres cold water to the boil in a stockpot over medium-high heat, skim scum from surface, reduce heat to low, half-cover with a lid, and simmer, topping up with extra water if necessary, until very tender (6-8 hours). Drain (discard vegetables), cool pigs’ ears to room temperature on a try, refrigerate overnight, then cut into julienne.
  • 02
  • For chilli-lime sauce, combine ingredients and ¾ tsp sea salt in a bowl and set aside.
  • 03
  • Preheat vegetable oil in a large saucepan or deep-fryer to 180C. Deep-fry pigs’ ears in batches until crisp and golden (2-3 minutes; be careful as hot oil will spit violently – cover it with a spatter guard). Drain on absorbent paper and keep warm.
  • 04
  • Meanwhile, heat half the clarified butter in a frying pan over medium heat, add half the eggs, fry until cooked to your liking (2-3 minutes for soft yolk), then drain on absorbent paper. Wipe out pan and repeat with remaining clarified butter and eggs.
  • 05
  • To serve, toss pigs’ ears and spring onion with a little chilli-lime sauce and divide among serving plates. Top each with an egg, scatter a little sea salt on the yolk and serve hot with extra chilli-lime sauce.

Note Pigs' ears are available from select butchers; you may need to order them. Chilli garlic sauce is available from select Asian grocers. Dotolo and Shook prefer the Tuong Ot Toi Viet-Nam brand.


At A Glance

  • Serves 4 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 4 people

Drink Suggestion

Bavarian beer, or a wine with a little sweetness, such as Domaine Huet demi-sec Vouvray.

Featured in

Nov 2011

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