Tag Archives: Mosman

Burnt Orange, Mosman

You’ll find Burnt Orange in a pretty cottage amongst the trees at Middle Head in Mosman looking out over the water, so it is understandably very popular for breakfast and brunch.

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They have four morning sittings on a weekend for breakfast at staggered half our intervals starting from 8.30am with an hour and a half per sitting. We and our friends opted for the first one. The breakfast menu is pretty standard – eggs, bacon, pancakes and the like, and all quite well executed. The sourdough bread is delicious. Though we do ask for a fried egg for one of our Small People and are told “ah no, we can’t do that, it requires a different griddle and it’s too difficult”. Um, didn’t think a small fry pan would be all that hard really, or maybe fried eggs are taboo in Mosman, not sure which. And although we are the first sitting and it is not busy we need to chase our drinks, which arrive after our meals.

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I go for the breakfast board, which has a very nicely done confit of trout. But I find the Avoca brown bread extremely dry and dense so don’t eat it, and pinch some sourdough instead.

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Attached to the café is a retail shop with a variety of treasures. I raise my camera to take some snaps. “Oh, no, you’re not allowed to take photos here”. Ok. I’ll take them in the Louvre or the Vatican instead, they don’t seem to mind.

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Burnt Orange, 1109 Middle Head Road, Mosman, Ph 02 9969 1020
http://www.burntorange.com.au

Burnt Orange Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Salt Meats Cheese, Mosman

Since its humble beginnings in 2012 as a warehouse in Alexandria with pallets of European food goods to buy, Salt Meats Cheese has morphed into so much more.  You can still buy the goodies, but now you can sit and eat, and cook up a storm.  SMC has now opened a small outpost on the northside in Mosman.  Plenty to buy to prepare your own meals at home but you can also sit in the cosy dining area and eat and enjoy a glass of Italian wine.  There are pre-prepared items like pizza, calzone, various rolls that they will heat up, and others made fresh. But I think the thing to do is go up to the counter with one of the knowledgeable staff, get a selection of cold meats, a plate of cheese (also get the onion jam with it, its delicious and they sell it to take home too), a glass of red and take a seat and relax.

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Add to that some of the house made mozzarella with fresh tomato….smc mosman (4)

…some very good truffle chips, and some dear friends for company, and you have the makings of a pleasant and relaxed meal.smc mosman (5)

There are also plenty of sweet treats on offer, including Papa’s ricotta cake, to enjoy with a well made cup of coffee.

Salt Meats Cheese Mosman, 803 Military Road, Mosman
http://www.saltmeatscheese.com.au

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Salt Meats Cheese Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Chiosco by Ormeggio, Mosman

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Alessandro Pavoni seems to be a man on a mission – a mission to deliver high quality Italian food to Sydney’s North Shore, where dining choices can be somewhat, ah, limited. Ormeggio was his first baby, now all grown up and crowned with two hats, followed earlier this year by Via Alta, and just before Christmas, Chiosco (Italian for kiosk).  A compact but open space, Chiosco is appropriately nautically themed and with a casual vibe. Kids are always welcome in any Pavoni establishment (which I love), and in this case, so are boats, as boat catering is available, and you can rock up in your boardies with a bit of sand if you so desire. They do breakfast too.

Our friendly waiter hands us menus and tells us dishes are designed for sharing, which is just as well as I pretty much want to try everything on it. And it is all delicious – Pavoni and Chef Victor Moya’s version of Italian “street food” – is simple, well executed and well priced food. As my husband said, “there is nothing here that we wouldn’t order again” (and again). I didn’t photograph everything we ate (do try the ragu, its excellent), and we over-ordered, and the food came to $38 per head, which I thought was great value. Plus it is currently BYO.

We tried suppli – crumbed risotto balls with peas, oxtail ragu on fontina cheese. Absolutely cracking!

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Burrata (a devine creamy mozzarella if you haven’t tried it before, I love it) with basil oil and beetroot. There were also some sourdough crumbs which added texture

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Fritto misto – a mix of Hawkesbury school prawns and baby calamari. Loved the boxed presentation.

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Corn on the cob. The smoky paprika and pecorino cheese take it to another level

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Baby octopus skewers with a salmoriglio dressing

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Charcoal gamberoni – huge prawns with a tangy chilli dressing

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Our ravenous kids also wanted burgers along with the ragu, they were massive.

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I can’t think of an appropriate Italian translation of the phrase “mate, love your work” (ben fatto doesn’t quite cut it), but that about sums it up.

Chiosco by Ormeggio, D’Albora Marinas The Spit Spit Rd Mosman, Ph 02 9046 7333
http://www.chiosco.com.au/

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Pastry class with Lorraine Godsmark @ Accoutrement

Confident. Knowledgeable. Precise. That about sums up Lorraine Godsmark, a recognised pastry maestro in Australia, from Lorraine’s Patisserie. I’m here with a friend at the Accoutrement cooking school in Mosman for Lorraine’s pastry class. One of Accoutrement’s most popular classes,  it sells out months in advance.

Pastry has always been a bit of a nemesis of mine. I can whip up a cake or a batch of biscotti with reasonable ease these days, and although I’ve tried a few tarts, I can never be confident about the outcome, and if my effort will result in a ball of unmalleable flour and butter ending up in the bin. So who better to learn from? There are fourteen of us in the class, nice and intimate, one of whom is a very entertaining Lorraine Groupie who has followed her from shop to shop over the years.

The evening is peppered with lots of great tips, anecdotes from her time at Rockpool where it all began, and how she learned over the years from her mistakes – so she encourages us to all watch each other’s pastry making, pointing out what we need to be aware of and helping us individually with our technique . Mildly critical of modern cookbooks, she thinks recipes are often shortened by publishers to appear simple and doable for the home cook, often leading to disasters in things like pastry where precision is a must – she takes account of the fact, for example, that an egg shell weighs approximately 5 grams. For that reason Lorraine is a big fan of Rose Levy Beranbaum’s books, which are very exact in their instructions.

That night, over the course of the three hours, we go through making three pastries, and have plenty of opportunities to ask questions. We only have time to make the pastry – which we get to take home – not the fillings, but the cooked final result is given to us to try (“and here’s one we prepared earlier”).

The first is a cream cheese pastry, which, as it contains no sugar, can be used for sweet or savoury. She gives us plenty useful tips
* Take your butter out of the fridge about half an hour before so that it is still hard, but not rock solid
* For this pastry she likes butter with high water content, such as Western Star, as this creates steam during the cooking process which leads to flaky pastry
* Don’t knead pastry dough. Always use a pastry cutter (which the lovely Sue from Accoutrement gave us to take home). For almost all her pastries, she uses a French technique called fresage, which involves pushing the pastry mixture in long streaks with the heal of your hand – she is very anti brining your pastry to a crumb in a food processor like in most recipes
Another common mistake is making our dough into a ball before we refrigerate it, which means it needs to be worked more when it comes to rolling time. She prefers to shape it into a flattish circle
* “Relax” your dough in the fridge for at least 2 hours or overnight before you roll it out to put into your tart tins
If you are making a big batch of pastry, after it has been relaxed it can be frozen. The best thing for frozen dough is to defrost it in the fridge overnight before use. Uncooked pastry freezes very well.
* Most recipes tell you to line your baking tin with baking paper for blind baking. She always chooses foil (spray it with a bit of canola first) as it is easy to shape right into the tin crevices, and make sure it is full to the brim with baking beads. Often we think our pastry shrinks, but it’s actually the lack of support while it is baking that causes it to lose shape rather than shrink

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This pastry is used for pear and ginger brown butter tarts, that have a brown butter topping. Words can’t describe how devine these are!

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The second pastry is called a Pate Sucre. She says its as close as she’ll get to giving away the date tart pastry recipe. Again for this a butter with a high water content is best. She describes this as a much “fattier” pastry, as unlike the first one it contains sugar, eggs and milk in addition to the butter. This one is also made using the fresage technique. Lorraine believes in minimising machine use for pastry.  Other than literally 10 seconds of pulsing in a food processor – it is all handworked, and when I see for myself what goes into it I fully appreciate why a slice of the date tart is $15. We try a quince franjipane tart made with this pastry. It is soooooooooooo flaky. Oh, she recommends cutting tarts with a hot knife – apparently at the bakery they heat up the knives before slicing.

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The final pastry is a shortbread pastry, and for this one she recommends cultured butter. This has a different technique and involves whipping sugar and egg yolks to begin with. Its more of a biscuit type base, and I definitely prefer the first two. We try a salted caramel with a macadamia tart made with it, just gorgeous. “You’ll have to wait for the book to come out to get the filling recipe for that one”, Lorraine says, laughing (nudge nudge wink wink to publishers).

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Such a wonderful evening! Stay tuned, I’ll be trying the complete recipes at home myself.

Accoutrement, 611 Military Rd, Mosman Ph (02) 9969 4911
http://www.accoutrement.com.au

Lorraine’s Patisserie, Shop 5, Palings Lane, Sydney, Ph (02) 9254 8009
http://www.merivale.com.au/lorraines-patisserie/

Ormeggio at the Spit, Mosman

005 Wasn’t it a lucky day for the Northside when the lovely Alessandro and Anna Pavoni decided they’d set up camp there? This tranquil, modern Italian fine diner is, literally, on the water, and a very pleasant spot to have a long lazy lunch or an intimate dinner. What is particularly appealing is that its fine dining without the hefty price tag – there are some lovely set menu and degustation options without you needing to take out a mortgage. This wasn’t my first visit but on this particular day we were meeting friends, all of us with our offspring in tow, so opted for an early dinner. The “sunset menu” is $59 for three courses which is pretty outstanding value for a two hatter. And kids are well catered for too – a great selection for $15 and under. (However I did think $9 for bread for the table was a bit much). They’re Italian, they won’t be surprised if you bring your kids (and great aunties, third cousins, a few nephews and your next door neighbour).  They also have some of the most beautiful plates and bowls I’ve ever seen – many of them are handmade by someone in Balmain, whose name I can’t recall!

The sunset menu has three entrees, three mains, and three deserts to choose from. I chose the veal agnolotti with onion consomme which was a fantastic start, just full of flavour.
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I steal a bite of the husband’s ling fish baccala, with polenta croutons and dutch cream potato and this too is delicious – the cream is not too heavy and the flavours of the fish come through.
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I rarely order risotto, as so many places get it wrong, but here – a canaroli risotto with saffron, liquorice and duck – I know I will be in good hands, and indeed the texture and consistency is just as it should be.
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The deserts are unusual, and a work of art at the same time. Look at how pretty this is – its carrot, with fennel seed ice cream, faro cream, vinegar caramel. Its an unexpected combination of flavours that works really well together.
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And then the toasted rice gelato, rice and ricotta cake, with earl grey. I didn’t particularly enjoy the foam, and there was a little too much earl grey for me, but I could have downed a whole bowl of that rice gelato and polished off a slab of the ricotta.
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To finish, some little lime and ginger zeppole.

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Who wouldn’t enjoy fine food sitting here?

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Ormeggio, D’Albora Marinas, Spit Rd, Mosman Ph (02) 9969 4088
http://www.ormeggio.com.au

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