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Heavenly Hummus

Have you got an hour? Ask a Middle Eastern person about their favourite hummus and be ready to listen long and hard! Hummus is an everyday traditional food all the way from Yemen to Egypt, Israel, Lebanon and Turkey but there are as many variations as there are eaters! At its simplest, hummus combines chickpeas and tahini, then there’s the potential addition of salt, pepper, spices, garlic, lemon juice, olive oil and water. Plus, there’s the question of texture. Should it be smooth or sturdy? We dig in…

Eater

Radio Chat – Does Hummus Make The World Go Round?

Hummus makes the world go around! Okay, maybe that’s an exaggeration but it is very important! I drop into ABC Radio Melbourne every couple of weeks to chat food. This week, I just had to talk about hummus. I’ve been obsessing about it – making it every which way, eating it, talking about it, and looking forward to eating it some more.

Traveller

truffle

Truffle Hunting

I’m always on the hunt for my next food adventure so when I had the opportunity to go truffle hunting, I jumped at it with careful hands and an excited heart.

Cook

Carrot Kheer

Following my my recent trip to Mumbai, I’m thrilled to share an Indian dessert recipe inspired by prominent UK Indian chef Anjum Annand. Carrot in dessert may seem strange but then – who doesn’t love carrot cake?

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Carrot kheer is this week's new recipe at danivalent.com. Inspired by my recent trip to Mumbai and a fantastic recipe by @anjum_anand, this is a reduced milk pudding, with carrots cooked out in it till they melt into sweet orange deliciousness. It's scented with cardamom and saffron and topped with toasted nuts. There's the barest hint of sugar, which you could leave out or replace with maple syrup if that's your vibe 🥰👍🥕 ...

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I love simple recipes that are more than the sum of their parts and that’s certainly the case with @atlasdining chef @charliesatlas's (ridiculously) Simple Shakshuka Sauce. The ingredients are basic but the slow cooking method gets all the sweetness out of the garlic and shallots creating a sauce with incredible depth of flavour.

The sauce is great with baked eggs, as you'll see here & in the video we made, now on my site, but it’s also brilliant as a pasta sauce or a braising medium for chicken, fish or prawns. You can also serve it as a base for sausages. It’s so versatile and adaptable.

Charlie’s Melbourne restaurant, Atlas, changes its cuisine every few months. It’s an extraordinary feat of creativity. As Charlie mentions, this recipe was developed for their Israeli menu which was so popular that the Atlas crew has spun it off into @lomah_med (land of milk and honey), a casual restaurant that’s in Melbourne Prahran and Melbourne Central’s @ellamelbourne precinct. Try their amazing falafel! Recipe and video at danivalent.com Styling @jules_mckie Photography and video @jakereederphoto @declanoppenheim Shot at @prahranmarket It takes a village! 🙏
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Every month I take small groups for behind-the-scenes experiences in top restaurants and food businesses. It's part of my Signature Dish Series of one-off events. The December edition is with iconic Melbourne sourdough pioneer @phillippasbakery.
The idea with these events is that the chef shows us how to make their signature dish - in this case, it's Phillippa's famous mince pies. Participants (max. 10!) will spend the morning with Phillippa at the normally off-limits factory. With the factory in full Christmas production mode, my group will make mince pies by hand before sitting down for an elegant luncheon that features a Champagne masterclass thanks to @bibendumwineco. Everyone leaves with their own mince pies, the recipe and a key ingredient to make more, a bottle of premium wine and - promise! - a warm glow :) Every event is a one-off & will never be repeated!

Find out more at danivalent.com or via link in bio.
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When I saw the words "Roasted carrots. Mead. Bee pollen" on the menu at @rascal.brunswick, I was a little bit "What the?" But chef @elliott.pinn249 has a way of resolving sometimes unfamiliar elements into delicious and ultimately straightforward dishes. The carrots are charcoal-roasted then glazed with mead, which is fermented honey and water, in this case infused with native-piney Geraldton wax. Goat cheese is piped over it and there’s a sprinkle of fried macadamias and bee pollen on top. It sounds fancy but it’s really just clever layering of sweet and tart, and a novel way to showcase carrots. This snacky veg dish is emblematic of the approach at the new wine bar, definitely something new for Sydney Road. Full review in today's Sunday Age and coming soon to @goodfoodau 🌞 ...

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Signature Dish Series: Each month I take just 10 people into a restaurant or food business - while it is closed - for an exclusive behind-the-scenes experience. The first one was at @vuedemonde, the 2nd one is at @maharestaurant (sold out), the December edition is at @phillippasbakery factory - mince pies, grower champagne and luncheon. Every event is a unique one-off. Tickets at danivalent.com or via link in bio. ...

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Apparently it's compulsory to serve kingfish in Melbourne restaurants so you might as well make it amazing. This is @puresouthdining's handline-caught raw kingfish with excellent tartare, crisp taro, spring peas and honeydew. Great ideas from @chefdavidhall 👌 ...

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Unicorn donut at @dessousmelbourne, also featuring sea urchin, corn custard, caviar. The horn isn't even that crunchy 🦄🍩😛 ...

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Jalebi! This popular Indian sweet is traditionally made with wheat and chick pea flour (besan) that's left to ferment before the batter is drizzled into hot oil in characteristic spirals. After frying, the twirly whirls are soaked in sugar syrup - good jalebi are crisp to bite then collapse into jangly sugary chewiness. The orange colour is traditionally saffron but food colouring is pretty common too. Fermenting gives jalebis a bit of sour cut-through but people also make an instant flour batter and add a little lemon juice to bring the acidity. Gotta say that India loves its sweets! See my story for more from Soam restaurant. ...

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Proud and beautiful Neeta in Bandra West bazaar. It's elections today in Maharashtra but this businesswoman isn't leaving her stall to vote. "Too busy," she told me. Bought a big knob of ginger for 20 rupees and kept wandering... ...

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Shooting videos today with @saranshgoila, famous for @goilabutterchicken and also an enthusiastic "sadak" (street) chef, inspired by the cooks on India's roadsides. We're exploring the street snacks at the Khao Galli (food lane) near Churchgate, Mumbai then heading to his studio to make kadhi, a dish I've become obsessed with. I always have a focus dish when I travel - something to dig into and try to understand. Kadhi is a yoghurt and chick pea flour soup/curry/sauce with pakoras. I'm so excited to learn how to make it! #sadakchef #kadhi #mumbaifoodies #mumbaifood ...

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In Australia, when we think bread, we usually think wheat and more often than not that means low-nutrient, characterless white flour. I'm a bit obsessed with wholegrains of all sorts so I totally geeked out on this platter of flatbreads at @shreethakerbhojanalay, a brilliantly fun thali restaurant in Mumbai. Owner Krishna Purohit explained all the different breads and even showed us the grains they were made from, as well as suggesting which breads worked best with the various veg dishes and condiments in our multi-course tray meal feast. This platter includes bread made with sorghum, wheat, two types of millet and corn, as well as a sweet wheatflour shortbread. They were garnished with ghee before being added to our thali. Yes, ate them all and stayed excited to the last bite. ...

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