Healthy Eating

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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.

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.

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.

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.

Chocolate and blackberry trifle


Dark chocolate and blackberries are a beautiful combination, and here crème fraîche jelly adds a lovely tang. Raspberries would work well in the mix, too. Start this a day ahead to give the flavours time to develop.

You'll need

700 gm dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids), finely chopped 850 ml thickened cream 300 ml pouring cream 200 gm blackberries Juice of 1 orange 100 ml crème de mûre liqueur To serve: shaved chocolate and blackberries   Chocolate sponge 3 eggs, at room temperature 120 gm caster sugar 40 gm each plain flour 40 gm self-raising flour 20 gm Dutch-process cocoa 20 gm cornflour 35 gm melted butter, cooled   Crème fraîche jelly 200 ml milk 1 vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped 170 gm couverture white chocolate, finely chopped titanium-strength gelatine leaves, softened in cold water for 5 minutes 750 gm crème fraîche 2 tsp lemon juice

Method

  • 01
  • For chocolate sponge, preheat oven to 180C. Butter a 23cm-diameter cake tin, line the base with baking paper, and dust sides with flour. Whisk eggs, sugar and a pinch of salt in an electric mixer until pale and tripled in volume (6-8 minutes). Meanwhile, triple-sieve flours, cocoa and cornflour, then fold into egg mixture in 2 batches. Fold in butter, then spoon batter into tin and bake until risen and centre springs back when lightly pressed (20-25 minutes). Cool in tin for 5 minutes, then turn out and cool completely on a wire rack. Store in an airtight container for up to 2 days.
  • 02
  • For crème fraîche jelly, bring milk and vanilla bean just to the boil in a saucepan, then remove from heat. Add white chocolate and stand for 5 minutes to melt, then whisk until smooth. Squeeze excess water from gelatine, add to milk mixture, then whisk over low heat until melted and combined. Remove from heat and stand to cool slightly (10 minutes). Whisk crème fraîche in a bowl until smooth, then strain into milk mixture and whisk to combine. Whisk in lemon juice and refrigerate until beginning to set (3-4 hours).
  • 03
  • Melt dark chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water, then transfer to an electric mixer, add creams and whisk until soft peaks form (2-3 minutes). Place blackberries in a bowl, crush with a fork, then mix in orange juice and liqueur.
  • 04
  • To assemble, pour a third of the chocolate cream into a 2.5-litre bowl about 23cm in diameter. Place in freezer until just firm (10-12 minutes), then pour half the crème fraîche jelly on top and return to freezer until just set (15-20 minutes). Halve cake horizontally and trim to fit bowl. Place a cake half on jelly, spoon in a quarter of the crushed blackberries and stand to soak into cake (about 5 minutes). Repeat layering with chocolate cream, jelly and cake, finishing with chocolate cream (if jelly begins to set too much, melt gently over low heat so it will pour). Refrigerate overnight to let the flavours develop, then serve topped with remaining crushed blackberries, fresh blackberries and shaved chocolate.

At A Glance

  • Serves 12 - 16 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 12 - 16 people

Featured in

Dec 2015

Recipes (9 )

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