cooking melbourne

Discovering Melbourne's Artisan Foods and Produce

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Poached Pears A Timeless Classic

It’s well and truly pear season now and a nice way to enjoy them when they are still a bit firm and crisp is sliced in salads or with cheese. Once ripe, pears do not travel well but you can still enjoy a juicy pear at work if you wrap it in paper and transport…

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strawberry tart

Strawberry Custard Tart

When making a strawberry tart or cake I’m always on the lookout for small, local strawberries that have real flavour. Small, tender strawberries are becoming impossible to find now as supermarkets and grocers favour big, crunchy varieties with a better shelf life. If you want to make a tart filled with strawberries and all you…

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shrouded pear cakes

Shrouded Pear Cakes

These cute individual pear cakes are a cinch to make. The pear peeking out the top looks so intriguing you may wonder if the fruit is from a dwarf pear tree but it’s all a tasty deception – only the top of the pear is kept whole and placed on the cake batter while the…

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chicken barberries saffron

Chicken Barberries and Saffron

Barberries are small, sour, red berries of the berberis plant and are used extensively in Iranian cuisine. The dried berries, added to rice pilafs and meat dishes, really lift the flavour and add colour, especially contrasting well with saffron in rice dishes (see Barberry Rice from SBS, Food Safari below). This chicken cooked with barberries…

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Zwetschgenknodel plum dumplings

La Petite Plum Knödeln

Sweet knödeln or dumplings filled with whole plums or apricots are an Austrian specialty that are eaten in place of the main meal rather than as a dessert course. The reason for this is two-fold; they are quite substantial fare and for Catholic Austria they became the meatless meal for Fridays and Lent in the…

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