December 19th, 2008. Posted by luane
June 19th, 2013. Posted by Sarah
The guest of honour
Last week the staff of Rockpool Bar & Grill Sydney had the great privilege of participating in a caviar training session. The training session was kindly put together by Chris McDonnell from Simon Johnson in Sydney and Jane Green from Black Pearl in Brisbane.
We have done a caviar tasting once previously and expectations were high after rave reviews from the first one, hosted three years ago. I was fortunate enough to be part of that training, and have fond memories of that first time I was able to taste and fully appreciate what true unpasteurized caviar was all about.
The Hunter St private dining room was the perfect room to host such a great event. The room was packed in with forty or more staff, eager to taste some of this luxury item. When the staff walked into the room they were greeted by the sight of a 1.7 kg tin of Californian Sterling Caviar sitting on ice. It’s not every day you see such a large tin of caviar, and for those who truly know how good quality caviar tastes, it makes you greedily start to look at the other people in the room a do the sums on how much each person will get.
Keen staff at caviar tasting, Rockpool Bar & Grill Sydney
After hearing all about the fantastic history of the sturgeon, and caviar techniques through the ages, it was refreshing to know that the sale of wild sturgeon has been banned for some years, so all the caviar that is sold around the world is farmed unless it is illegally poached and sold on the black market. The countries that control the wild sturgeon industry say that the stocks of sturgeon were so badly managed that they almost made the sturgeon extinct in the areas around the Caspian sea. Fortunately though, for lovers of caviar, a few smart people back in the 80’s decided to set up caviar farms and we can now eat caviar guilt free.
Caviar farms are now found in many parts of the world. China, Russia, parts of the Middle East, a few European countries, Canada and the USA – all have set up caviar farms to try to take advantage of this luxury product. The caviar that was kindly donated to our bellies for this tasting was the Sterling caviar from California in the USA. We also tried the Osietra caviar from Lombardy in Northern Italy.
The farmed sturgeons are harvested only after 8 years making the farming a long process for anyone thinking of starting a sturgeon caviar pond in their back yard. Questions were asked about the difference between the different types of caviar – Beluga, Sevruga, Osietra and so on. The famed Beluga caviar was the one that most people wanted to hear about and Jane Green summed it up the best by saying “all the caviars are a personal preference for your taste, but Beluga has the famous name making it very popular”. We found out the difference between pasteurized and unpasteurised caviar and that pasteurising extends its shelf life and makes the caviar soft textured and dulls the flavour. Also, the larger the tin, the better it tastes as less oxygen gets to it giving it a fresher flavour.
After the formalities of hearing all about the caviar, it was time to taste! We were told that the best way to taste caviar is with as little other flavour as possible. We opted for buttered pieces of white sliced toast which Chris and Jane were very impressed by, as to not alter the flavour in any way. They also told us that anything acidic, like lemon or vinegar would destroy the texture of the caviar and start to break the cells down, again altering the flavour.
Time to try the caviar! Big spoonfuls of luxurious roe were spooned on top of the little triangles of toast. The look on the faces of the people trying it for the first time was priceless. After they tried their first piece I knew what they were thinking “I hope I get more on the next one” and “I better move closer to guarantee I get another one”.. and they shuffle in so as not to miss out on a second piece. These crazy thoughts go through your head after you taste it. The taste is something that’s hard to describe. It’s creamy and fresh at the same time, and leaves a lovely fresh taste of the sea in your mouth. Then you understand what all the hype is about. You are just left craving more and you suddenly realise how special it is.
The author Rockpool Bar & Grill
The chefs and waiters in the room were divided over which caviar they enjoyed more. The Sterling from the white sturgeons native to the USA or the Osietra from Lombardy in Italy? My personal preference is the Sterling from the USA. It is a close call though, so maybe I’ll have to taste some more to really make up my mind…
June 17th, 2013. Posted by Sarah
Lamb shanks work equally well in this recipe. Add creamy potatoes or wet polenta for the perfect winter dinner.
Kohlrabi is the most delicious of vegetables. It’s not always the easiest to find, but it’s well worth hunting out.
You can also roast kohlrabi in the oven as you would potatoes. Peel and chop, then toss in some olive oil, adding a few sprigs of rosemary, thyme and seasoning. Roast at 200°C for 20-25 minutes or until golden and tender.
TWICE-COOKED VEAL SHANKS
plain flour, for dusting
8 veal shanks
1/4 cup olive oil
1 medium brown onion, peeled, roughly chopped
3 carrots, peeled, roughly chopped
4 celery stalks, roughly chopped
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
2/3 cup cabernet merlot
8 cups veal stock
6 cloves garlic, peeled
4 bay leaves
4 sprigs fresh thyme
Preheat oven to 200°C. Lightly flour shanks then, in a heavy-based pan over high heat, seal shanks in olive oil.
Remove shanks once golden and set aside. In the same pan, sauté onion, carrots and celery with a pinch of salt for a few minutes or until browned. Deglaze pan with wine, and simmer for 1 minute. Add stock, garlic, herbs and shanks to pan and bring to a simmer.
Cover the pan and place in oven for about 2 hours, turning halfway through until meat is beginning to fall off the bone.
Remove from oven. Check seasoning, and serve with fresh green vegetables – peas, beans, broccolini or zucchini – blanched and finished with extra virgin oil, lemon and salt.
Serves 4 as a side
1 large kohlrabi, cubed
1 small brown onion, finely diced
2 cloves garlic, cut in half
2 tbsp unsalted butter
1/4 cup milk, warm
sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper
Bring a medium pot of salted water to the boil. Add the kohlrabi, onion and garlic. Simmer for 15 minutes or until kohlrabi is tender, then drain well.
Place the warm vegetables, along with the butter and the milk, in a food processor. Process until just combined, adding a little more milk to get the desired consistency. Season to taste.
Return purée to warm pan and heat through as needed.
SOMETHING TO DRINK
Cabernet merlot The Margaret River region in Western Australia produces elegant, well-structured cabernet sauvignon that is enhanced by the fleshy darks fruits of merlot. Pour a glass of Woodlands Cabernet Merlot 2010 ($24) to enjoy with the twice-cooked veal shanks.
June 13th, 2013. Posted by Sarah
Back in mid April, Rockpool Consulting was proud to play our part in an immaculate gala dinner. Celebrating the new partnership between Qantas and Emirates, the dinner, MC’d by the incomparable Karl Stefanovic was held in Hangar 96 at Sydney Airport, tables laid beneath the mighty wings of the A380. If you’ve never had dinner beneath the wings of a mighty large plane – trust me – try it some time!
The 1000 guests comprised frequent flyers, dignitaries and friends of both Qantas and Emirates. Our own Neil Perry and the Rockpool Consulting team designed the globally-inspired menu of course and the food was executed to perfection by Stix Catering – we work with these guys a lot on these big gigs and nobody does it quite like them. Our sincere thanks for a fabulous job.
Tina Arena, Sarah de Bono and actor William McInnes provided the entertainment as well as an incredible aerial performance by Legs on the Wall. Alan Joyce and Neil shared their stories with the crowd while Qantas Ambassadors Miranda Kerr and John Travolta added the celeb factor. Qantas staff models strutted their stuff in a display of the just-launched new uniforms designed by Martin Grant, who also attended on the night.
An amazing dinner – an incredible event – to celebrate an exciting new partnership. We are, at Rockpool, as proud as ever to be a part of this amazing extended Australian family and look forward to many more gala dinners to come!
Canapes from around the world
Goats cheese and tea smoked raisin tartlet
Smoked ocean trout crostini
White cut chicken, strange tasting sauce
Wild mushroom arancini
Slow cooked Murraylands lamb loin, yam and ginger puree, stir fried cabbage and black bean
Salad of baby cos, radicchio, frisee with palm sugar vinaigrette
Blood orange sorbet
Arabic Petit fours and Baklava
June 11th, 2013. Posted by Sarah
This chicken recipe is as simple as it gets – use any herbs you like. I quite like to add some hot chilli flakes to the marinade to jazz it up. The marinade also works well with a butterflied leg of lamb on the barbecue. Serve with a fresh cucumber and mint salsa.
The kimchi is a sure-to-impress addition to the table. It’s a great flavour burst – wonderful with any protein and a bowl of rice and steamed greens.
THYME, OREGANO AND CITRUS CHICKEN
1 x 1.6kg whole chicken, preferably organic
1 orange, finely grated zest, no pith
1 lime, finely grated zest, no pith
1 cup fresh orange juice
1 tbsp fresh lime juice
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil
6 cloves garlic, finely chopped
3 sprigs fresh thyme leaves, chopped
2 sprigs fresh oregano leaves, chopped
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Mix all marinade ingredients together and season to taste.
Remove the backbone from the chicken and discard. Flip chicken over so that breast side is facing up, and press down to flatten, breaking the breast bone.
Place marinade and chicken in a large bowl and toss so that the marinade covers the chicken. Cover and refrigerate six hours or overnight.
Preheat oven to 180°C. Place chicken onto an oven tray and drizzle over marinade.
Roast for about 30-40 minutes until chicken is just cooked, glazing chicken while roasting. Once cooked, remove chicken from pan and set aside to rest.
Drain off pan juices into a saucepan, skim off fat and reduce slightly until consistency of light gravy. Strain and discard solids. Serve gravy immediately with the chicken, along with some blanched green beans or roasted baby carrots.
1/2 Chinese cabbage
2 tbsp coarse sea salt
2 tbsp caster sugar
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tbsp grated ginger
1 tbsp gochujang red pepper paste (available from Asian food stores) or chilli sauce
1 tbsp rice vinegar
1 tbsp Thai fish sauce
1 green spring onion, finely sliced
1 tsp sesame seeds
Cut off and discard the cabbage root. Cut cabbage lengthways into quarters then cut into 2cm-wide slices.
Toss with salt and sugar and leave overnight in the refrigerator.
Mix the garlic, ginger, gochujang or chilli sauce, rice vinegar and fish sauce in a bowl.
Drain the cabbage. Add the green onion and sesame seeds to the garlic and ginger mix. Combine with the drained cabbage and serve.
SOMETHING TO DRINK
Chardonnay Neudorf is a family-owned winery from Nelson, New Zealand. The 2011 chardonnay ($37) features ripe stone fruit, citrus and vanilla spice aromas, with well-defined richness to complement the chicken.
June 7th, 2013. Posted by Sarah
This month we profile a revered staff member; a man who brings an exceptional level of service to the Rockpool Group, Michaël Engelmann.
Michaël is a native of Alsace-Lorraine, France, and has been the Head Sommelier at Rockpool Bar & Grill, Sydney since November 2010. At what is the Rockpool Group’s most awarded restaurant when it comes to wine, being a 3 time recipient of the Wine Spectator Grand Award, Michael is, ultimately, caretaker of the Southern Hemisphere’s most prestigious wine list, one with 3,200+ references – and a team of 8 sommeliers.
Michaël’s CV pre-Rockpool is filled with restaurants of legend and more than the odd Michelin star. His accreditations are even more impressive.
In April 2009, Michaël won the title of the American Sommelier Association’s Best Sommelier in America 2009. Shortly afterwards, he took and passed his Advanced Sommelier exam in Chicago at which point he was awarded the Rudd Scholarship for achieving the highest score in all 3 exam areas. Later that year, Michaël was voted one of the five Best New Sommeliers of 2009 (rising stars) by Wine & Spirits Magazine.
In January 2010, Michaël won the Johnston Medal award for achieving the highest score in the Court of Master Sommeliers Advanced Sommelier examination in the US in 2009 and in July 2011, in what is sure to be one of his personal and career highlights, Michaël passed the highly regarded Master Sommelier examination (there are only 200 master sommeliers in the world) on his first attempt with the highest exam score overall. A rare feat for which he was named the coveted Krug Cup winner, a designation shared by only 14 other Master Sommeliers worldwide.
Needless to say, with such extraordinary achievements and dedication to his craft, we are proud to have Michaël as a member of the Rockpool team. Accreditations aside, Michaël acts as a mentor to many of our younger staff and his passion for wine and fine service see him taking his staff on incredible tasting journeys - constantly sharing knowledge and perfecting the team’s tasting skills and expanding their own knowledge on wine history, viniculture, viticulture and how best to serve Rockpool’s customers.
And as we take time to acknowledge the Rockpool staff and family that do such a wonderful job from day to day, we also, sadly, must take the time to say farewell to Sophie Otton. Sophie, Wine Director of the Rockpool Group, has been with the Rockpool Bar & Grill team since its inception in March 2009. She leaves us to move onto her own projects – consulting, educating, writing and speaking
With Sophie’s departure, Michaël will be overseeing the wine program and team of seven sommeliers, and ensuring that Rockpool Bar & Grill Sydney’s wine list remains one of the best in the world.
June 4th, 2013. Posted by Sarah
Breakfast is one of life’s pleasures, Neil picks his top three Sydney cafes for a morning repast in this months column for Qantas’ Australian Way magazine….
When it comes to cafe culture, Australia is in a league of its own. Thanks to our multicultural heritage, abundance of quality fresh produce, love of good coffee and emperate climate, we excel at going out for breakfast or brunch. This month, I’m turning the spotlight on some of Sydney’s choice spots for a morning repast.
Room 10 Espresso in Potts Point (10 Llankelly Place, 0425 810 174), is a hole in the wall where proprietors Dan Blackman and Andrew Hardjasudarma work the coffee machine (and the bench they call a kitchen) with panache. There’s not much room to make complicated dishes, so the quality of the ingredients is crucial. They deliver. The menu is mostly open or closed sandwiches, which are superb. Customers can also order breakfast rice or organic muesli, but really it’s all about toasted sarnies – my favourite is soy and linseed toast with mashed avocado and a couple of boiled eggs (extras include ricotta, prosciutto and fresh tomato). Add fresh juice and delicious coffee, and you’re good to go.
Heading south to Redfern, Kepos Street Kitchen (96 Kepos Street, 02 9319 3919) has a Middle Eastern flavour thanks to owner and head chef Michael Rantissi’s Israeli heritage. I can’t go past “Dad’s favourite brekky”, which features felafel, hummus, labneh, hard-boiled eggs and a dukkah-sprinkled tomato salad with bread. Trust me, it tastes as good as it sounds – the felafels are among the best I’ve ever had. Yes, you can order something more traditional – toast, granola – but why would you when a shakshuka of baked eggs with tomato is on the menu? Scrumptious stuff. And if you’re feeling decadent, there’s always the churros with salted caramel. Waistline be damned.
Moving a little farther south to Rosebery, another fun breakfast is to be had at Kitchen By Mike (1/85 Dunning Avenue, Rosebery, 02 9045 0910). Mike McEnearney is one of my ex-soldiers and he has assembled a first-rate crew. The cafeteria-style venue is located in the Koskela design store and the catchcry is “sustainable and organic”. McEnearney makes all the bread and pizza in the woodfired oven and even churns his own butter. The coffee is great and fresh juice is available. Go to the counter and choose from fruit and nut loaf, bircher or toasted muesli, a cracking porridge, toast with all manner of condiments, or a killer eggs benedict. It’s unbeatable for a quick business breakfast or lazy weekend treat.
June 3rd, 2013. Posted by Sarah
Recipes from Good Weekend if you missed them on Saturday. XO sauce is one of the most adaptable Asian condiments you can keep in your fridge. Great as a stir- fry sauce or as a chilli sauce on the side, it’s also delicious over steamed chicken with ginger and shallot.
The blue eye salad is like a Thai-style san choy bow – beautiful served with just rice. You can use prawns, chicken thigh fillet, minced lamb or beef instead of the fish. Serve ground roast rice over the top of the salad for extra crunch – simply fry jasmine rice over a low heat until opaque and grind until fine.
BRAISED WAGYU IN HOME-MADE XO CHILLI SAUCE
60ml vegetable oil
1 large brown onion, finely chopped
5 cloves garlic, finely chopped
Small knob ginger, finely grated
1 tsp sea salt
1 cup fresh shiitake mushrooms, stems removed, cut into 1cm-thick pieces
1kg wagyu oyster blade, cut into 2cm pieces
1/3 cup plain flour, seasoned with salt and freshly cracked black pepper
4 tbsp Shaoxing wine
2 cups fresh chicken stock
2 tbsp Chinese dark mushroom soy sauce
2 tbsp Chinese light soy sauce
2 tsp rock sugar
1 whole star anise
1 whole cinnamon stick
freshly ground black pepper
XO chilli sauce
1 heaped tbsp dried shrimp, soaked in hot water for 2 hours
750g long red chillies, seeded and roughly chopped
1 small knob fresh ginger, chopped
7 cloves fresh garlic, chopped
11/2 tsp sea salt
3 tsp caster sugar
3/4 cup vegetable oil
2 long green shallots, chopped
For the XO chilli sauce, drain the shrimp and chop roughly. In a food processor, blend shrimp, chillies, ginger, garlic, salt and sugar together, then slowly add oil. Transfer sauce to a large saucepan and cook slowly over a low heat for about 1 hour. Remove from heat and stir in chopped green shallot. Set aside.
Heat 20ml oil in a heavy-based saucepan. Add onion, garlic, ginger and salt, and cook over a low-medium heat for 8 minutes or until soft. Remove onion mixture from pan and set aside. Heat 20ml oil and pan-fry shiitakes on high heat until golden. Remove from pan and set aside.
Place beef in seasoned flour and toss to coat. Return pan to a high heat with remaining 20ml oil and brown meat in batches. Remove and put to one side.
Deglaze pan with Shaoxing wine then add chicken stock, dark and light soy sauces, rock sugar, star anise and cinnamon. Bring to simmer, check seasoning and return beef, shiitakes and onion mixture to pan. Bring to boil then reduce heat to simmer, stirring occasionally until beef is tender and liquid has thickened. Add pepper and check seasoning. Remove star anise and cinnamon and reserve to use as a garnish, if desired. Serve with XO sauce and steamed rice.
WARM SALAD OF SPICY BLUE EYE
2 cloves garlic, chopped
4 small wild green chillies, chopped
2 tbsp peanut oil
50g green beans, trimmed, finely sliced pinch of sea salt
1/2 small red onion, halved, finely sliced
150g skinless blue eye fillets, cut into 1cm dice pinch caster sugar
1 tbsp fish sauce
2 tbsp lime juice
1/2 head of baby cos lettuce, leaves separated and washed small handful combined coriander and mint leaves, to garnish
Pound garlic and chillies in a mortar to form a fine paste.
Heat a wok until just smoking. Add the peanut oil and, when hot, stir-fry the beans with the sea salt and onion. After 30 seconds, add the blue eye and stir-fry a further 30 seconds. Remove wok from heat and add the pounded garlic and chilli, sugar, fish sauce and lime juice. Stir together, taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary.
Place cos leaves on a plate, spoon the fish mixture over the top, and garnish with mint and coriander leaves. Serve straight away.
SOMETHING TO DRINK
Grüner veltliner Originally hailing from Austria, the grüner veltliner grape variety has adapted well to the cool climate of the Canberra district. Lark Hill’s 2012 grüner ($40) features aromas of wild fennel and spice that give way to a fine dry palate – perfect with the spicy blue eye salad
May 30th, 2013. Posted by Sarah
The Winter months in Australia mean many things to many people. Early morning fog over Sydney harbour and cancelled ferries, excessive chill and that whistling wind in Melbourne as the cool crowd dusts off the black scarves and North Face jackets; and poor old Perth, well the temperatures drop to somewhere in the 20s! All jokes aside, Winter heralds the start of many things of great beauty to us in the Rockpool Group – slow roasted meats, heart warming puddings, soups, wood fire and charcoal, the best red wines (and whites) and single malts; house made pastas, quinces, steaming dumplings, pots of delicious tea, chilli and soon, very soon…truffles.
Whatever joy Winter brings for you, we hope you’ll find the time to pop into one of our fine establishments and lap up the very best of Winter at Rockpool…
ROCKPOOL BAR & GRILL MELBOURNE – the cornerstone of good cooking, a celebration…
Private dining and our set menus are tackling Winter head first at Rockpool Bar & Grill Melbourne! Chef Will Cowan-Lunn has Australia’s most incredible produce at his finger tips – and he’s not afraid to use it! Cream of celeriac soup with toasted walnuts, mushroom and gruyere toast; Sauteed pine mushrooms with saltbush, warrigal greens, fontina and soft white polenta; Grilled pistachio and chocolate millefeuille. Our set menus are available for large bookings but may just be worth finding a reason to book The Highland Room or Private Terrace pronto! We like to just celebrate life, ourselves, here at Rockpool. Oh, and Winter!
SPICE TEMPLE MELBOURNE ~ duck and dessert cocktails
Fill your (ugg) boots with yum cha this Winter – nothing like dumplings, spice and roasted meats to warm the cockles. Cumin lamb sliders, Gua bao with roasted Yunnan duck, and Spring onion pancakes. Desserts are sublime at Spice Temple, but if you’ve had a sui mai too many, consider a dessert cocktail – what a great invention! The ‘Gentleman’s espresso’ has get-me-through-this-frosty-day written all over it…single barrel Tennessee whiskey, five spice syrup and espresso.
ROSETTA ~ al forno
Words like carciofi, volatili, aragosta and bavarese make us all warm on the inside before a shaving of Reggiano has even passed us by! Throw ‘al forno’ into the mix and we are sold! What better time to test drive the beautiful Rosetta’s wood fired oven and charcoal grill than the cold Victorian Winter. Meats and seafood with warming beans and sauces and delicious sides like Roasted beets with horseradish or Black cabbage braised with anchovies and garlic…try Wood fire roasted duck, mattone style with roasted apples and verjus; Charcoal grilled Cape Grim beef fillet with parsley, garlic and white beans; or Wood fire roasted lobster with herb butter. Bellissimo.
ROCKPOOL BAR & GRILL PERTH
Our wee gal over in sunny Perth is renowned for fabulous seafood, great steaks and crisp WA whites, but there is more to Rockpool Bar & Grill Perth than her sunny disposition and when the barometer drops she steps up to the plate and delivers, on many levels. Yep – she can do Winter just as well as the next guy…
Lyonnaise onion tart with Jerusalem artichoke, peas, chestnuts and rocket; Warm salad of wood fire grilled quail with poached quinces, watercress and pecans; Wagyu bolognaise with hand cut fettucine; Pulled Jarrahdene pork pie with parsnip puree and chipotle sauce. If you are skipping out past the bar, pop in and try a quick Dark chocolate martini. These should not be underestimated! Oh and don’t forget free valet parking Monday to Friday lunchtime.
ROCKPOOL ON GEORGE ~ partridge and parfait, since 1989…
Down George St Sydney way, Phil and his team continue to explore, create and deliver. Friday lunches roll on with their classics theme, a weekly return to the recipe archives of Rockpool days gone by. From Korean tuna tartare and Stir fried spanner crab omelette to Tea smoked quail and eggplant salad, and of course our Date tart on the menu since 1989! We can’t wait to see the menu each month brings…and what fascinating dishes the crew dream up next. Currently in place and waiting to adorn your Winter table at Rockpool on George…Partridge – potato and bone marrow fondant, silverbeet and madeira sauce; Chicken parfait inside a one thousand layer pork tart; Chestnuts with green tea yuba, water chestnut, buckwheat and mushroom. Im toasty already!
SPICE TEMPLE SYDNEY – heaven facing chillies and long life
Let’s talk chilli…it cools us in the Summer and warms us in the Winter. What can’t this glorious spice do?! For something a bit special these cooler months, jump on board one of Spice Temple’s special dinners such as the upcoming Shaanxi event on June 12th where you’ll feast on regional Chinese classics like Steamed chicken salad with black sesame paste and wood roasted chilli. If you can’t make it to Shaanxi, then there are plenty of much-loved long stayers and a bunch of fresh young things on the Spice Temple menu to satisfy your chilli needs – Spice fried chicken wings with heaven facing chillies; Snake beans stir fried with pork and XO sauce – and Beef fillet in fire water. Wash them down with one of our fantastic teas – a personal favourite, the Flowering Jasmine Peach – a jasmine scented green tea perfectly matched to spicy food. Peaches traditionally symbolize long life and longevity in China…just a wee added bonus!
ROCKPOOL BAR & GRILL SYDNEY ~ the big red
The warm, inviting bar at Rockpool Bar & Grill Sydney comes into its own in the cooler seasons. Easier to enter, harder to leave once settled with a negroni or good glass of Crawford River Cabernet Sauvignon and a table laden with Empanadas, Ortiz anchovies on smoked tomato bruschetta, and Charcoal oven roasted squid and belly pork. But you all know there is even more to the bar than that – incredible cocktails, sensational sakes, sherries and beyond; and in fairly recent news, you can now indulge in a glass (or a bottle should you prefer) of the 2008 Henschke ’Hill of Grace’ from Eden Valley in South Australia. This wine, by Rockpool friend and general legend Stephen Henschke, is defined by deep set blue and black berry fruits with notes of violet and mocha, layered and rich finishing with superb harmony and balance. Stephen has acknowledged that the 2008 will indeed be a great vintage. It is something of a rarity to be able to taste wines of this quality and renown by the glass only and we are proud to be able to offer the Hill of Grace to you, our customers.
We hope you can join us this Winter. Stay warm.
May 29th, 2013. Posted by Sarah
As the Rockpool classic lunches roll into June, we celebrate a change in weather, a gaggle of new produce to play with and a few interesting Asian flavours on this month’s menu.
Crisp rice pancake with combination stuffing
Tea smoked quail and eggplant salad
The crisp rice pancake, in its’ day, was an enormous seller at Wockpool, Darling Harbour – oh the memories of perfectly balanced Vietnamese flavours, the amazing textural contrasts and plates lined up for days on the pass waiting to head out to hungry guests.
The tea smoked quail was and is an exercise in subtle smokiness – an elegant dish that became much loved and an introduction, for many of us in the kitchen, to interesting elements like our house made bean paste sauce.
And so to the passionfruit miroir…genoise sponge, bavarois and of course passionfruit itself….this dish will speak volumes for itself. Truly one of our classics and a worthy recipe in Neil’s first ever book, ‘Rockpool’.
We hope to see you for one of our Friday lunches in June as we continue our step back in time to the Rockpool classics of yesteryear.
May 27th, 2013. Posted by Sarah
Recipes from Good Weekend if you missed them on Saturday. Other fish work well here instead of swordfish, particularly those that are a bit “meatier”, such as blue-eye trevalla, hapuka or snapper. The remoulade is a great base for cooked prawns: simply serve them on top, cold and peeled, and finished with a squeeze of lemon.
Leave the rose water out of the ice-cream mix if it isn’t to your taste. You could also try mixing the nuts up by making it half pistachio and half ground almonds. This ice-cream is fantastic served with almond finger biscuits or with a Middle Eastern rice pudding.
Crumbed swordfish with celeriac remoulade
2 cups fresh breadcrumbs
2 tablespoons pine nuts, finely chopped
3 tablespoons milk
plain flour, for dusting
4 x 200g swordfish fillets
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 lemon, cut into 4 wedges sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 medium peeled celeriac, julienned
1 cup whole-egg mayonnaise, plus extra
4 tablespoons Dijon mustard handful flat-leaf parsley leaves, roughly chopped
4 tablespoons salted baby capers, thoroughly rinsed, roughly chopped
10 baby cornichons, thoroughly rinsed, finely chopped
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
sea salt and freshly ground white pepper
Mix the breadcrumbs, pine nuts, thyme and parsley in a medium bowl and season to taste. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs and milk. Set aside.
Using another bowl, add enough flour to coat the fish pieces, shaking off excess. Place each fish piece into the egg wash, and then place into the crumb mix, pressing down to coat well, and shake off excess.
In a large non-stick frying pan heat the oil over medium heat and pan-fry fish pieces for about 2 minutes each side, until golden on both sides and cooked through. Drain on paper towel.
For the remoulade, bring a medium pot of salted water to the boil and blanch celeriac for 30 seconds. Refresh immediately in iced water and drain thoroughly. Mix together remaining ingredients in a bowl to create a dressing and gently mix with the celeriac.
Season fish anf remoulade to taste, and serve with lemon wedges and mayonnaise.
Simple pistachio ice-cream
6 egg yolks
175g caster sugar
600ml single cream
3 tablespoons rose water
150g ground pistachios
Cream the egg yolks and sugar together in a mixer until smooth, thick and pale. Transfer to a large stainless-steel bowl.
Pour the cream into a small saucepan and bring to the boil over a medium heat. Gradually pour the hot cream over the egg mixture, beating continually.
Place the in bowl over a pot of simmering water (making sure the base of the bowl does not touch the water) and stir with a wooden spoon until the mixture thickens to a custard.
Add the rose water and fold through the pistachios. Allow the mixture to cool, then pour it into a serving bowl, cover with cling film and freeze overnight.
Serve straight from the bowl.