We're eating… TAIYAKI
Last month Salaryman in Sydney quietly started serving one of Japan's favourite sweet street snacks – taiyaki. The fish-shaped pastry is commonplace in Tokyo's shopping malls and street stands, usually filled with red bean paste. At Salaryman they're a little more gourmet with zesty yuzu curd, blood orange segments and vanilla ice-cream. If the smell of the puff pastry cooking in the taiyaki irons in the window doesn't lure you in, the Instagram opportunity certainly will.
Foam cocktail at Yukie's Bar. Photo: Supplied
We're drinking … FOAM COCKTAILS
Sticking with the Japanese theme, Yukie's Bar next door to Mr Miyagi in Melbourne has just released a new range of foam cocktails, fuelled by the popularity of their cold drip espresso martini with warm white chocolate and sake foam. While refreshing and fruity options are available, the Nut Job with salted Nutella foam, Frangelico and RumChata is a crowd favourite.
We're cooking with… LIQUID SMOKE
To a barbecue master, liquid smoke is the truffle oil of cooking. To those of us without a barbecue – let alone a hot smoker – it's a godsend. A couple of drops of the stuff, which is real smoke distilled into liquid, gives sauces, gravies, meat, seafood, eggs and any anything else you add it to another flavour dimension. You can find it in some supermarkets, but failing that, try usafoods.com.au or essentialingredient.com.au.
We're buying… ASPARAGUS
New-season Aussie asparagus hit markets in the last week of August, but as mid September approaches it's becoming more common (and more affordable). The spring spears are perfect for light and tasty eating, whether an afternoon snack with olive oil and seasoning, in a salad or blackened on the barbecue. Check the labels or with your shopkeeper to make sure it's local.
Christy Tania's Mystique dessert at Aria Bar & Lounge at The Langham in Melbourne. Photo: Shellie Froidevaux
We're craving… THAT MYSTIQUE DESSERT
It's almost a shame to eat something that takes 65 steps to make, but from Monday to Thursday between September 5 and 15, MasterChef and dessert aficionados can dig into Christy Tania's Mystique dessert at Aria Bar & Lounge at The Langham in Melbourne, created for the reality show's finals. $35 including coffee or tea, $60 including canapes and a glass of sparkling. Bookings via firstname.lastname@example.org.
Kangaroo carpaccio with bush herbs from Antonio Carluccio's 6 Seasons. Photo: Picasa
We're watching… ANTONIO CARLUCCIO'S 6 SEASONS
World-renowned chef and one half of Two Greedy Italians, Antonio Carluccio, will explore indigenous food with an Italian twist in this SBS series starting September 8 at 6pm and running for six consecutive days. Filmed in the lead-up to the Margaret River Gourmet Escape late last year in Noongar country, Western Australia, join Carluccio as he cooks native ingredients in accordance with the six seasons of the Aboriginal calendar alongside television presenter and elder Richard Walley.
Pop-up Pantone Cafe in Monaco. Photo: Supplied