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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.

A festival of cheese hits Sydney

Kick off winter with a week of cheese tasting.

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.

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.

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.

Pescado a la Veracruzana


You'll need

3 vine-ripened tomatoes 2 tbsp olive oil 4 golden shallots, coarsely chopped 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped 250 gm (1 punnet) assorted cherry tomatoes 16 large pimiento-stuffed olives, halved 1 preserved roasted pimiento, finely chopped (see note) 1 tbsp large capers in vinegar, rinsed 1 tbsp coarsely chopped coriander 2 fresh bay leaves ¼ tsp annatto paste (optional) 20 gm butter, for greasing 4 red snapper fillets (about 180gm each) To serve: coriander leaves and iceberg lettuce, cut into wedges

Method

  • 01
  • Preheat oven to 220C. Grill tomato on a cake rack over an open flame on your stovetop until skin is blackened (5-10 minutes; see note). When cool enough to handle, peel, then finely chop.
  • 02
  • Heat oil in a frying pan over high heat, add golden shallot and garlic and stir occasionally until tender (5-10 minute). Add tomatoes, olives, pimiento, capers, coriander, bay leaves and annatto paste and cook until combined (3 minutes), season to taste and set aside.
  • 03
  • Grease a 20cm x 28cm baking dish with butter, add fish, then top with tomato sauce and cook until fish is cooked through (30-40 minutes). Scattered with coriander and serve with iceberg lettuce to the side.

Note We used Goya pimientos, which are available in jars from select delicatessens. If you don't have a gas stovetop, you can roast the tomatoes in the oven at 220C until their skins blister (10 minutes).


This Spanish-influenced fish dish is from the gulf state of Veracruz. Snapper is the fish of choice, but you could use any firm white-fleshed fish. If you have time, you can replace the preserved pimiento with red capsicum cooked slowly over an open flame until charred (as in step 1), then peeled. This dish goes well with steamed white rice and a squeeze of lime juice.


At A Glance

  • Serves 4 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 4 people

Drink Suggestion

A deep pink, fruity rosé.

Featured in

Sep 2011

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