The Christmas issue

Our December issue is out now, featuring Paul Carmichael's recipes for a Caribbean Christmas, silly season cocktails and more.

Subscribe to Gourmet

Subscribe to Australian Gourmet Traveller before 28th December, 2016 for your chance to win a share of $50,000!

Gourmet digital

Subscribe to Gourmet Traveller for your iPad or Android tablet.

Chilled recipes for summer

When the mercury is rising, step away from the oven. These recipes are either raw, chilled or frozen and will cool you down in a snap.

Decadent chocolate dessert recipes for Christmas

13 of our most decadent chocolate recipes to indulge guests with this Christmas.

What the GT team is cooking on Christmas Day

We don't do things by halves in the Gourmet office. These are the recipes we'll be cooking on the big day.

Sydney's best dishes 2016

For our 50th anniversary issue in 2016, we scoured Australia asking two questions: What dishes are making waves right now? What flavours will take us into the next half-century? Sydney provided 16 answers.

Paul Carmichael's great cake

"Great cake, also known in Barbados as black cake or rum cake, is a variation of British Christmas cake that's smashed with rum and falernum syrup," says Momofuku Seiobo chef Paul Carmichael. "This festive cake varies from household to household but they all have two things in common: tons of dried fruit and rum. It's a cake that should be started at least a month out so the fruit can marinate in the booze. Start this recipe up to five weeks ahead to macerate the fruit and baste the cake."

Summer feta recipes

Whether in a fresh salad or seasonal seafood dish, feta's creamy tang can be used to add interest to a variety of summer dishes.

Mango recipes

Nothing says summer like mangoes. Go beyond the criss-cross cuts - bake a mango-filled meringue loaf with lime mascarpone, start off the day with a sweet coconut quinoa pudding with sticky mango, or toss it through a spicy warm weather Thai salad.

Shark Bay Wild Scampi Caviar

Bright blue scampi roe is popping up on menus across Australia. Here's why it's so special.

Fior di latte

You'll need

4 litres (16 cups) milk 6 gm citric acid 0.5 ml vegetarian rennet 2 tbsp fine sea salt


  • 01
  • Warm milk to 37C in a large saucepan over medium heat. Meanwhile, combine citric acid and 30ml water in a bowl. Stir into milk.
  • 02
  • Combine rennet and 30ml water in a bowl, add to milk and stir to combine.
  • 03
  • Remove from heat, set aside until curd forms (20-30 minutes). Cut into 3cm pieces.
  • 04
  • Pour about 400ml boiling water over curd to increase temperature to 39C. Set aside until curds are slightly firmer (20-30 minutes).
  • 05
  • Strain through a sieve lined with muslin and set aside to drain (2-3 hours).
  • 06
  • Gently press down on curd to remove excess liquid, then transfer to a large bowl.
  • 07
  • Cut into 3cm pieces, then scatter with salt.
  • 08
  • Pour over enough boiling water to just cover, then, using two wooden spoons, begin to stretch curd.
  • 09
  • Place a bowl of iced water next to you. Cover your hands with two pairs of gloves, dip hands in iced water, then stretch curd until it becomes smooth and pliable (2-5 minutes).
  • 10
  • Pinch pieces of cheese into balls of desired size and place in a bowl of cool water. Fior di latte is best eaten on the day it’s made.

Note This recipe makes 8 small or 4 large fior di latte.

To make stretched-curd cheese you need scientific  precision but a relaxed attitude, writes Alice Storey. 

The world of stretched-curd cheeses is an embarrassment of riches, from provolone, a matured version, to mozzarella, made from the milk of the water buffalo, to fior di latte, made from cow's milk.

If you have a handy herd of water buffalo at your disposal you could try making your own mozzarella. But if not, fior di latte is your best bet for making delicious stretched-curd cheese at home.

Using a good-quality non-homogenised cow's milk is imperative. Barambah Organics produces a fantastic organic milk with the requisite cream top. It's available from select delicatessens and supermarkets. Other small-batch milks are available from better health-food shops.

Fior di latte is made using the same technique as mozzarella; its success comes down to the quality of the milk. "If the cow is stressed, the milk is stressed, therefore your fior di latte is stressed," says mozzarella master Giorgio Linguanti of La Latteria in Melbourne's Carlton. You too must adopt a relaxed approach.

That said, cheese-making also requires scientific precision. You'll need scales that weigh to the gram for measuring the citric acid, a pipette or a syringe for measuring the rennet, and a digital thermometer. Ensure that all the equipment is sterile.

Rennet is an enzyme that causes milk to coagulate, separating curds from whey. Rennet can be made from moulds, from the stomachs of some animals, or from plants that have coagulant properties, such as nettles and thistles. Old-fashioned plain junket tablets are one form of rennet, but we've opted to use a liquid form made from plant enzymes, available from specialist cheese-making shops and The Essential Ingredient. You'll also need citric acid, which is available from the baking section of larger supermarkets, to acidify the milk.

Combine the citric acid and the milk and warm the mixture to 37C. Then combine the rennet and the water, but only at the very last second, because the chlorinated water will react with the rennet. Some cheese-makers suggest using filtered water, but this isn't necessary if you work quickly. Stir the rennet mixture into the milk mixture, sit back and wait for the magic to begin.

After about half an hour the curds will resemble silken tofu and will separate from the whey (liquid). Cut your curds into rough 3cm squares and pour over enough hot water to bring the mixture to 39C - this helps to release any remaining moisture in the curds.

Transfer the curds to a muslin-lined sieve, press them to remove excess liquid and set aside until well-drained. This is necessary to produce a coherent curd for stretching. At this stage the mixture should look a little like firm ricotta.

Transfer the mixture to a large bowl, cut again into rough 3cm squares and scatter liberally with fine sea salt. Don't be tempted to skimp on the quantity of salt - it sounds like a lot but it will be diluted by the water. Pour over enough boiling water to cover, then, wearing at least two pairs of rubber gloves to protect against the heat, gently begin to stretch the mixture with your hands. This is going to get hot, so have a bowl of iced water ready to plunge your hands into. It's essential to use boiling water to make the curds both malleable and stretchable. Once the curds begin to stretch they'll become pliable, shiny and smooth. Gently knead the mixture into a ball - don't overwork it or the cheese will become tough - then pinch off pieces of the desired size and transfer them to a bowl of cool water.

Fior di latte is best enjoyed on the day it's made. Achieving the desired creamy texture can be tricky, but practice makes perfect, so if at first you don't succeed, keep trying. You'll be glad you did.

At A Glance

  • Serves 8 people
Signature Collection

Find out more about the Gourmet Traveller Signature Collection by Robert Gordon Australia, including where to buy it in store and online.

Read More
Christmas Boutique is now open

The smallgoods, homewares, art and more from the pages of GT are now all under one roof, ready to take their place under the tree.

Read More
Gourmet TV

Check out our YouTube channel for our latest cover recipes, chef cooking demos, interviews and more.

Watch Now

At A Glance

  • Serves 8 people

Featured in

Sep 2011

You might also like...

Vegetarian canape recipes


Oysters with wasabi nori and lime dressing

Caponata tartlets


Lardo, truffle honey and walnuts

White bean and olive crostini with salami and Pecorino Sardo


Devilled eggs with celery and coriander salt

Yoghurt baked in vine leaves with dill and parsley


Yellow split pea dip

conversion tool

get the latest news

Sign up to receive the latest food, travel and dining news direct from Gourmet Traveller headquarters.