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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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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.

Sichuan chicken noodle salad


A chilled noodle salad is just the ticket when the mercury soars. It's even better paired with juicy poached chicken and spicy Sichuan oil, allowing you to add as much heat as you like.

You'll need

250 gm fresh thin egg noodles 2 tbsp grapeseed oil 1 tbsp soy sauce 1 tbsp Chinkiang vinegar 1 tbsp caster sugar 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped 2 Lebanese cucumbers, seeds discarded, shredded on a mandolin 2 spring onions, thinly sliced, plus extra, to serve To serve: roasted sesame seeds   Sichuan poached chicken 2 skinless chicken breast fillets 50 gm ginger, coarsely chopped 2 spring onions, coarsely chopped 10 Sichuan peppercorns   Sichuan spiced oil 60 ml (¼ cup) grapeseed oil 2 star anise 1 tbsp finely grated ginger 1 tbsp roasted sesame seeds 2 tsp each ground Sichuan pepper and ground chilli

Method

  • 01
  • For Sichuan poached chicken, place ingredients and 1 tsp sea salt in a saucepan and cover well with cold water. Bring to the boil, then remove from heat and stand for 5 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. Drain and shred chicken, and refrigerate to chill (10-15 minutes).
  • 02
  • For Sichuan spiced oil, heat oil and star anise in a saucepan over medium-high heat until oil shimmers (1-2 minutes). Combine remaining ingredients in a heatproof bowl, strain oil over (discard star anise), mix to combine and set aside. Sichuan oil will keep for a week in a sealed jar.
  • 03
  • Cook noodles in a saucepan of boiling water over medium-high heat until tender (2-3 minutes), then drain and rinse under cold running water. Transfer to a bowl, shaking off excess water. Add grapeseed oil, soy sauce, vinegar, sugar and garlic, toss to combine, then add cucumber, spring onions and shredded chicken, drizzle over Sichuan oil to taste, toss to combine and serve scattered with sesame seeds and extra spring onion.

At A Glance

  • Serves 4 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 4 people

Featured in

Feb 2015

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