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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.

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. 

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Kisume, Melbourne

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O Tama Carey's fried eggs with seeni sambol, coconut and turmeric

"I first cooked a version of this dish - inspired by the excellent deep-fried egg dish at Billy Kwong - while working at a restaurant in Sri Lanka," says O Tama Carey. "The lattice-like eggs are doused in a creamy turmeric curry sauce and topped with seeni sambol, a sweet-spiced caramelised onion relish. This dish is equally perfect for an indulgent breakfast as it is served as part of a larger meal." The recipe for the seeni sambol makes more than you need, but to get the right balance of spices you need to make at least this much. It keeps refrigerated for up to three weeks; use as an onion relish. The curry sauce can be made a day or two ahead.

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.

Oxtail broth with fresh pasta squares and dried wild forest mushrooms


You'll need

250 gm fresh egg pasta dough 25 gm mixed dried wild mushrooms To taste: fine sea salt To taste: freshly ground black pepper 200 gm fresh small exotic mushrooms To serve: freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano   Oxtail broth 75 ml extra-virgin olive oil 100 gm carrot, roughly chopped 100 gm celery stalks, roughly chopped 100 gm onion, roughly chopped 100 gm leek, roughly chopped 2 kg oxtail, cleaned, trimmed of excess fat and cut roughly into 4cm-long pieces 2 ripe tomatoes, roughly chopped 3 flat-leaf parsley sprigs 3 thyme sprigs 1 small bay leaf To taste: fine sea salt

Method

  • 01
  • For the oxtail broth, heat half of the extra-virgin olive oil in a deep-sided frying pan over medium heat and sauté the carrot, celery, onion and leek until they are nicely browned. Transfer to a large saucepan. In the same frying pan, use the remaining extra-virgin olive oil to sauté the oxtail until it is browned. Add the browned oxtail and the remaining ingredients to the large saucepan with 4 litres water and bring to the boil. Lower the heat and slowly simmer without a lid for 3-4 hours or until the meat is falling off the bone. Skim away the excess fat and other particles that come to the surface of the liquid throughout the cooking process. Take the oxtail out and set aside. Strain the liquid through a fine strainer and refrigerate. If there is excess fat, it will solidify at the top of the refrigerated broth. Remove this with a spoon and discard before using the broth. Pick the meat from the bones, discarding any fat or sinew, and reserve. Oxtail broth can be made in advance and frozen in an airtight container for up to 2 months. Makes approximately 2.5 litres.
  • 02
  • Roll the pasta dough into sheets of 1mm thickness. Cut the pasta into 2cm x 2cm squares. A corrugated roller cutter is best for this job as it makes wonderful jagged-edged squares.
  • 03
  • Cover the dried mushrooms with boiling water and leave for 15 minutes until the water has cooled and the mushrooms have settled to the top (see note). Lift the mushrooms out of the water and set aside.
  • 04
  • Bring 2.4 litres of oxtail broth to the boil. Add the soaked mushrooms, 450gm of reserved braised oxtail meat and a little sea salt and black pepper, if required, and simmer for approximately 20 minutes. Add the pasta squares and cook for 3-4 minutes. Serve immediately garnished with the exotic mushrooms and lots of Parmigiano-Reggiano.
Note Soaking the mushrooms is essential as dried mushroom products tend to contain dirt and grit. Lifting the mushrooms out of the water instead of pouring everything through a sieve helps to ensure the dirt is properly removed. Repeat the process of submerging the mushrooms in water if they contain a lot of grit.

This recipe is from Pasta Artigiana by Nino Zoccali, published by Murdoch Books, $49.99, hbk. It has been reproduced with minor GT style changes.

This recipe is from the August 2012 issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller.

At A Glance

  • Serves 6 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 6 people

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