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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.

Smoked trout and fennel pies with peas


You'll need

600 gm store-bought shortcrust pastry (such as Carême) 500 ml (2 cups) fish stock 1 baby fennel bulb, finely chopped 175 gm piece of skinless ocean trout, pin-boned, cut into 3cm pieces 150 gm skinless fillet of snapper, cut into 3cm pieces 100 gm peeled uncooked prawns, coarsely chopped 150 gm hot-smoked trout, coarsely flaked 125 gm crème fraîche 4 spring onions, thinly sliced ½ cup (loosely-packed) flat-leaf parsley, coarsely chopped 2 tbsp coarsely chopped dill Finely grated rind and juice of ½ lemon 240 gm (2 cups) peas 20 gm butter, coarsely chopped To serve: lemon wedges

Method

  • 01
  • Preheat oven to 180C. Roll out pastry on a lightly floured surface to 3mm thick, place on a tray and refrigerate to rest for 30 minutes. Cut out six 16cm-diameter rounds and press into six 3cm deep, 10cm-diameter metal pie tins, trim edges and refrigerate to rest (30 minutes). Blind-bake until just set and starting to colour (10-12 minutes). Remove weights and paper and bake until golden and cooked (8-10 minutes). Set aside to cool.
  • 02
  • Reduce oven to 100C. Bring stock to the simmer in a saucepan over medium heat, add fennel and simmer until tender (3-4 minutes). Add trout, snapper and prawns, simmer until just opaque and almost cooked (2-3 minutes), then set aside in stock to finish cooking and to cool slightly (15 minutes). Drain (discard stock), then transfer mixture to a bowl and coarsely flake fish. Add smoked trout, crème fraîche, spring onions, herbs, lemon rind and juice, season to taste, stir gently to combine, then divide among pie shells and keep warm in oven.
  • 03
  • Blanch peas in boiling salted water until bright green (1-2 minutes). Drain, crush with butter, season to taste and pile on top of pies. Serve warm with lemon wedges.

At A Glance

  • Serves 6 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 6 people

Drink Suggestion

Crisp, cool chenin blanc.

Featured in

Nov 2014

Recipes (10 )

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