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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.

Hungarian paprika-spiced cauliflower soup


In this soup, called karfiolleves in Hungary, cauliflower is traditionally cooked in a paprika broth; roasting it first, however, gives the soup a greater depth of flavour. Nokedli are Hungarian mini dumplings that are delicious fried in butter and scattered on top.

You'll need

110 gm butter, coarsely chopped 1 kg cauliflower, cut into florets 4 garlic cloves, finely grated 2 tbsp thyme 1 tbsp Hungarian paprika, plus extra, to serve ½ tsp cayenne pepper Finely grated rind of 1 lemon 1 onion, finely chopped 1.5 litres (6 cups) chicken stock To serve: sour cream and lemon wedges ¼ cup each (loosely packed) flat-leaf parsley and dill   Nokedli 150 gm (1 cup) plain flour 2 eggs, lightly beaten For tossing: olive oil

Method

  • 01
  • For nokedli, combine flour in a bowl with 1 tsp fine sea salt. Add eggs and 100ml cold water and stir to make a thick batter (it will not be smooth). Bring a large saucepan of salted water to the boil. Using a spatula, push batter through a colander in batches into the saucepan and cook until nokedli float to the surface (1-2 minutes). Drain well, toss in a little oil, spread on a tray and set aside. These can be made a couple of hours ahead and refrigerated until required.
  • 02
  • Preheat oven to 180C. Melt 50gm butter in a small saucepan, then transfer to a large bowl, add cauliflower, half the garlic, thyme, paprika, cayenne pepper and lemon rind, stir to combine, season to taste, then scatter over oven trays lined with baking paper and roast, stirring occasionally, until cauliflower is golden (40-45 minutes).
  • 03
  • Heat 30gm butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and sauté (4 minutes), then add remaining garlic and stir until fragrant (2 minutes). Add stock, season to taste and bring to the simmer. Add roasted cauliflower, reserving ½ cup to garnish, then simmer until tender and flavours combine (12-15 minutes). Purée with a hand-held blender until smooth, season to taste and keep warm.
  • 04
  • Heat remaining butter in a large frying pan over medium-high heat, add nokedli in batches and fry until golden (3-4 minutes), transfer to a plate and season to taste.
  • 05
  • Serve soup hot, topped with nokedli, reserved cauliflower, sour cream, herbs, lemon wedges for squeezing and extra paprika.

At A Glance

  • Serves 4 - 6 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 4 - 6 people

Drink Suggestion

Bone-dry, minerally white grüner veltliner.

Featured in

Aug 2014

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