The Christmas issue

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

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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.

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.

Shark Bay Wild Scampi Caviar

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

Dark chocolate delice, salted-caramel ganache and chocolate sorbet

"The delice from Source Dining is a winner. May I have the recipe?" Rebecca Ward, Fitzroy, Vic REQUEST A RECIPE To request a recipe, email fareexchange@bauer-media.com.au or send us a message via Facebook. Please include the restaurant's name and address, as well as your name and address. Please note that because of the volume of requests we receive, we can only publish a selection in the magazine.

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.

Koh Loy Sriracha Sauce, David Thompson's favourite hot sauce

When the master of Thai food pinpoints anything as his favourite, we sit up and listen.

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."

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.

Australia's best beach hotels

Watsons Bay Boutique Hotel, Sydney, NSW

Watsons Bay Boutique Hotel, Sydney, NSW

Some of Australia's greatest beach hotels reside in the sunshine state, Queensland - the tropical north excels at barefoot luxury. Getaway options don't come much glitzier than the opulent Palazzo Versace, a $300-million Italian designer hotel on the Gold Coast's Broadwater. The Pacific is just over the back fence, but bedazzled guests might find it hard to quit the gilded confines of this neoclassical sand castle.

Lovers of the high life also head for Soul Surfers Paradise, which towers 77 storeys above the ocean. The vibe is seaside glam, hence the elegantly appointed apartments with expansive sea views, destination restaurant Seaduction, and a dramatic tiered pool facing The Esplanade and Main Beach.

Further north, we like Alamanda Palm Cove, formerly the Angsana, not simply for its prime seaside position but also because the highly regarded Nu Nu's restaurant has just moved in, serving Asian-accented seafood beneath the palms. A short drive up the coast road leads to another likeable beach property, the Port Douglas Peninsula Boutique Hotel. Tucked at the end of Macrossan Street, most of its 34 one-bedroom suites have views over Four Mile Beach to the Coral Sea. A few days lazing on a private terrace here is a surefire remedy for city stresses.

Gun-barrel views down Port Jackson to the Harbour Bridge and Sydney CBD skyline are a drawcard at the renovated, 32-room Watsons Bay Boutique Hotel, but we also love getting sand between our toes at pretty Camp Cove and long, lazy lunches at the hotel's retro-styled Beach Club.

Out of town, we like Bannisters, the made-over '70s motel at Mollymook, three hours south of Sydney. Partly for the plunge pool and private deck of the Terrace penthouse, partly for the spa, the Pool Bar and Rick Stein's in-house restaurant, but mostly for the genuine charm of the NSW South Coast.

In the west, the Cable Beach Club Resort and Spa at Broome has long defined our dreams of Indian Ocean escapes, but other less celebrated West Australian beach addresses are taking our fancy, too. With its ocean outlook and striking architecture, Novotel Ningaloo Resort on Exmouth's Town Beach is a sophisticated gateway to the submarine wonders of Ningaloo Reef. We're also fans of Smiths Beach Resort, down south in the Margaret River wine region.

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