June 2010

There have been really good rains recently across most of Australia’s cattle grazing areas, which has had two effects: in the short term it’s slowed things down at market as big rains make it harder to get cattle to and fro. This puts pressure on supply and therefore on prices. Longer term, though, it’ll mean better pasture and better grass-fed beef.

Osso buco is perfect cold-weather food and at Mission Restaurant and Bar (3 Little Queen St, Chippendale, Ph 9318 0815) they take a classic milanese approach to it: braise the veal shank and serve it with saffron risotto and gremolata.

Chicken’s a year-round favourite and at Etch (62 Bridge St, Sydney, Ph 9247 4777) we like the sound of this mix of sophistication and homeliness: it’s a ballotine of freerange bird with sautéed Brussels sprouts, bacon and bread sauce.

As temperatures drop, we might be more inclined to think about shredded meat potted in its own fat. OK, so rillettes might sound a bit more appetising. At Number One there’s an hors d’oeuvres of pork rillettes with toasted sourdough and there’s nearly always a rabbit version on at Bistro Ortolan. At that Leichhardt favourite they use Macleay Valley rabbit with duck liver and Armagnac parfait and serve it with toasted brioche.

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