Australians witness a wonderous transformation from green to fantastic orange, red, ochre and gold hues as the temperatures cool down in the subsequent months of autumn. Also, it is a beautiful season and provides people with a lit bit of respite after months of long and baking hot Summer.
Plus, people can participate in many activities and attend various events in different cities and towns nationwide. Furthermore, you can cook various dishes, including vegetarian and non-vegetarian specials; for instance, you can pick your favourite from an assortment of soups, salads and main dishes.
So, let us look at some of the mouth-watering recipes for Australian Autumn dishes:
- Imagine sitting at your favourite spot in the house with a bowl of pasta and a glass of wine; there is just one word to describe the scenario – blissful, especially when you make pizzoccherri. It is a type of buckwheat tagliatelle pasta from northern Italy.
- Mix 250 gm buckwheat flour and 170 gm finely ground Italian flour in a large bowl with one teaspoon salt. Make a well in the centre of the flour mixture, pour in 220ml room-temperature water, mix in well, and then knead for five minutes until you have a smooth dough. Cover with a cloth and set aside for 10 minutes.
- Roll the dough into a 24cm-long sausage, then cut this into three 8cm-long pieces. Generously flour a work surface with buckwheat flour, then roll each piece of dough into a rough 30cm x 45cm rectangle about 2-3mm thick. With the long side facing you, fold over one of the rectangles twice so it has three layers, then cut widthways into 1cm-wide ribbons. Put these on a tray, cover them with a cloth to stop them from drying out, and repeat with the remaining two dough rectangles.
- Bring a large saucepan of well-salted water to a boil. Turn down the heat to medium-high, shake any excess flour off half the pasta ribbons, then drop into the pot and stir gently with the handle of a wooden spoon to stop them from clumping together. Cook for two or three minutes, until cooked to al dente, then, using a large slotted spoon or spider, lift out into a large colander set over a large bowl. Bring the water back to a boil, repeat with the remaining pasta, and save two tablespoons of the pasta cooking water.
- Put the oil or butter in a wide, heavy-based, medium-sized saucepan on medium-high heat, add all the pizzoccheri and the reserved pasta water, and stir gently to coat and combine. Off the heat, sprinkle over the cheese and herbs, and serve topped with lots of freshly ground black pepper.
Roast Chicken Risotto with Chicken Crackling
- Strip all the meat from the chicken carcass, shredding it into bite-sized pieces. Transfer to a plate along with any skin you can salvage, jellied juices, and fat, then chill until needed. Put the carcass in a large saucepan with the carrot, halved onion and bay leaves.
- Cover with cold water, then bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a gentle simmer, cover and cook for at least 30 mins and up to 2 hrs until you have about 1 litre of stock. Strain through a sieve into a large jug or pan. Discard the bones, bay and veg. If you end up with more than 1 litre of stock, continue to cook over high heat to reduce. Whisk in the stock cubes until dissolved, then keep the pan warm over low heat while you make the risotto.
- Heat a large casserole or high-sided frying pan over low heat. Melt the butter, add the oil and fry the chopped onion for 10 mins until soft and translucent. Add the garlic and stir for 1 min more, then add the rice. Cook and stir for a few minutes until the rice has absorbed some of the butter and is shiny. Pour in the wine and stir until the liquid has bubbled away.
- Add the lemon zest and thyme, then a generous ladleful of the warm stock. Continue to cook the risotto over low-medium heat for 20 mins, stirring often, adding the stock a ladleful at a time and allowing it to be absorbed before the next addition. Add the reserved chicken and any jellied juices and fat towards the end of the cooking time to warm through.
- The risotto should be loose and soupy, and the rice grains should be nearly cooked but retain a little bite. Stir in some more stock to loosen if needed (or kettle-hot water if you’ve run out), then a large knob of butter and the parmesan. Season well and cover. Leave for a few minutes for the butter and cheese to be absorbed while you make the crackling.
- Tear or chop the chicken skin into small pieces, then put it in a cold, dry frying pan. If the skin is relatively lean (with no fatty patches), add a drizzle of oil; otherwise, the fat should render from the skin and start to sizzle. Fry for a few minutes until the skin is crisp, then transfer to a plate lined with kitchen paper.
- Recheck the consistency of the risotto – the rice will absorb more stock as it rests, so you may need to add more. Spoon into bowls, drizzle with truffle or olive oil, and top with shaved parmesan and the chicken crackling.
Pretzel and Pecan Banana Rum Pie
- Heat the oven to 200C (180C fan)/390F/gas 6, and line a 22cm-diameter x 3cm-high round cake tin with baking paper.
- Put the pretzels, pecans and salt in a food processor and pulse five or six times until they resemble breadcrumbs studded with small pieces of pretzel and nut. Tip into a bowl and stir in the demerara sugar.
- Melt the butter, maple syrup and cinnamon in a small saucepan on medium heat, then stir into the pretzel bowl. Press this crust mix firmly and evenly into the lined tin, put the tin on an oven tray and bake for 20 minutes, until golden. Remove from the oven and set aside while you make the caramel.
- Put the sugar and two tablespoons of cold water in a medium saucepan on medium heat. Cook for seven to eight minutes, resisting the urge to stir and instead swirling the mix around the pan to ensure it gets an even caramel colour.
- Take off the heat and carefully stir in the cream, butter, rum and salt – remember, the caramel will be very hot and may spit. Return to the heat and cook, occasionally swirling, for two minutes, until thickened, then pour over the pie crust and leave to cool for 15 minutes. Once cool, refrigerate for about an hour to set.
- To make the bananas, put the sugar, a tablespoon of cold water and a quarter teaspoon of salt in a medium frying pan on medium heat and cook, swirling the pan as necessary to combine, for seven to eight minutes, until the mix turns amber.
- Add the butter and rum, cook for another three or four minutes, until smooth and thickened, then carefully lay in the banana halves and cook them for a minute on each side. Take off the heat, then arrange the banana halves neatly on top of the chilled pie, leaving as much caramel sauce as you can behind in the pan. Return the pie tin to the fridge and set the caramel pan aside.
- Now make the cream. Put the cream, creme fraiche, maple syrup and vanilla in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the balloon attachment. Whip for three or four minutes on medium speed until you get soft peaks, then spoon and swirl the cream artfully over the top of the pie. Carefully unmold the pie and slide it onto a large plate.
- Put the banana caramel pan back on medium heat for two to three minutes until it’s slightly thicker than maple syrup. Take off the heat, stir in the passion fruit juice and lime juice, and leave to cool for five minutes.
- Drizzle one and a half tablespoons of the caramel over the top of the cream and pour the rest into a bowl or jug. Grate the lime zest over the pie, scatter over an eighth of a teaspoon of flaked salt and serve with the remaining caramel on the side.
- Now that you have two main dish recipes, you can make a mocktail to accompany them. Also, it is a non-alcoholic drink made with lapsang souchong tea, lemon juice, honey and marmalade.
- Put a coupe glass in the fridge to chill. Put the cold tea, lemon juice and marmalade in a cocktail shaker and stir to break down the marmalade so it starts to dissolve. Stir in the honey, then add the ice.
- Shake well until the outside of the shaker feels cold, then double strain into the chilled glass. Serve as it is, or garnish it with a slice of dried orange as per your liking.