We're championing fresh food that packs a flavour punch, from salads and vegetable-packed bowls to grains and light desserts.
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We asked our favourite confectioners and cafe owners from around the country for their hottest tips.
Sydneysiders revive a landmark restaurant in country New South Wales.
You’ve got another chance at last winter’s sell-out drop from Four Pillars.
A bar for art’s sake pops up at Semi Permanent.
Attica chef Ben Shewry has been thinking about your buttocks, and wants to introduce them to an Australian design classic.
Charleston, the antebellum jewel of the Carolina coast, has embraced its Lowcountry roots, writes Shane Mitchell, and now shines anew.
Our June issue is out now, and it's all about breakfast. Pat Nourse kicks things off with his editor's letter.
Andrew McConnell’s Cantonese-inspired restaurant will become a classroom for a night during the Emerging Writers’ Festival.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Kick off winter with a week of cheese tasting.
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.
This year's finalists across 11 different categories include established and new hotels, all with particular areas of excellence. Stay tuned to find out which hotels will take the top spots when they're announced at a ceremony at QT Melbourne on Wednesday 24 May, and published in our 2017 Australian Hotel Guide, on sale Thursday 25 May.
If you love Christmas baking, take the best-quality butter, eggs and fruit and introduce this sweet, fragrant Italian bread to your festive tradition.
Dried and glacé fruit are a common theme when it comes to Christmas sweets and treats from European countries. Think of the dense, booze-soaked fruit cakes, puddings and tarts of English origin, which have been so widely adopted here in Australia, despite our seasonal differences. Or perhaps German stollen, a sweet Christmas bread studded with glacé cherries and dried fruit, sometimes with a luscious marzipan centre but always finished with a generous dusting of icing sugar. The Italians have their own version of a festive bread - panettone, a buttery, lightly sweetened, egg-enriched dough with a distinctive cupola-shaped top, traditionally studded with raisins and candied citron. Visit just about any Italian delicatessen or greengrocer at Christmas time and you'll find a wide selection of panettone including more modern versions that have been stuffed with chocolate chips or limoncello.
There are almost as many legends attached to the history of panettone as there are versions of the bread. But a common thread is its place and time of origin - Milan, dating back, in one form or another, to the Roman Empire, when ancient Romans sweetened leavened bread with honey. Even the origins of panettone's name are somewhat mysterious. Some historians claim it derives from the Italian "panetto", meaning small bread loaf. Conversely, panettone literally means large bread. Or it may have come about at the time of its first recorded association with Christmas, which occurred in the writings of an 18th-century illuminist who referred to it as pane di tono, meaning luxury bread. But it wasn't until the early 20th century that panettone became widely adopted by Italians as their Christmas bread. This was due to large-scale production by two rival bakers, Angelo Motta and Gioacchino Alemagna. The two family companies were bought out by Nestlé in the late 1990s, and they have since been taken over by the Italian bakery company Bauli.
So, if there's so much commercially produced panettone out there, why make your own? It's a labour-intensive and time-consuming process (multiple proving is necessary to ensure a light and airy result)and may not yield a perfect-looking panettone (although this will improve each time you attempt the recipe). But the pay-off is a delicate, preservative-free, top-quality panettone that hasn't travelled great distances to get to your kitchen table (so no air miles to feel guilty about) and is far fresher than any shop-bought product could ever be.
As always, using the best available produce will ensure the best possible results. Free-range or organic eggs, great-quality butter and premium dried and glacé fruit are essential. Seek out a deep-sided cake tin to achieve the traditional domed shape. These tins are available from specialist cookware stores. Standard round cake tins are about 6cm deep, whereas the tin we've used is 10cm deep. If you can't find such a tin, you can bake the panettone in a larger diameter shallow cake tin. Although it won't have the same proportions, your panettone will have the same taste and texture.
Enjoy your home-baked panettone warm or at room temperature, with an espresso - or, in true festive spirit, with a glass or two of Moscato d'Asti and topped with honeycream and berries, as we've done here. Salute e buon Natale.
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