Author

Megan Chalmers

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In Michelin-starred restaurants around the globe and in Good Food Guide-hatted restaurants in Australia, detailed layering of delicate flavoursome elements combine to make exquisite desserts. While these perfected plates of beauty seem impossibly complex to craft, Essentials’ Megan Chalmers shares a few tricks of the trade, putting together a buttermilk rice pudding with baklava wafer, Turkish delight and sugared rose petals to ensure your evening’s dining table is an award-winner. Buttermilk Rice Pudding 2 cups coconut…

Few desserts entertain better than a decadent cheesecake bursting with colour and natural fragrances. They may look tricky but we’ll let you in on a secret… they’re a cinch! Sesame Ricotta Cheesecake Tart with baked strawberries and sweet balsamic dressing 1 x Cheesecake Biscuit Crumb Base (see recipe below) Note: For the Sesame Ricotta Cheesecake Tart, add 2 tbsp black sesame seeds to the biscuit crumb base while blitzing. 250g cream cheese, warmed to room…

Raclette is a semi-hard cheese made on both sides of the French and Swiss Alps. Raclette du Valais or Fromage à Raclette, as they are traditionally called, are made using the milk of cows grazing on the alpine meadows. The name comes from the French word ‘racler’, which means ‘to scrape’. The cheese has a thin, brownish-orange coloured rind and pale yellow flesh (the ‘pâte’ of the cheese) with a few scattered open holes. It…

There’s nothing more winter friendly than toasting marshmallows over an open fire. But have you ever considered how easy it is to make your own homemade marshmallow? Essentials’ Megan Chalmers shares this recipe for light and fluffy orange blossom marshmallow; one that’s a touch more adult indulgent and that also pairs well with winter poached fruits or chocolate desserts. Orange Blossom Marshmallow 500g caster sugar 1 tbsp liquid glucose 400ml water 2 tbsp gelatine powder…

Shchi Soup with saffron milk cap mushrooms, sauerkraut and smoked chicken Serves 8 8 cups chicken stock ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil 1 onion, diced ¼ cup saffron milk cap mushrooms (or pine mushrooms), sliced (provedores) 3 medium potatoes, peeled and cubed 2 cups sauerkraut, well strained 1 cup cabbage, thinly shredded 2 carrots, julienned 2 smoked chicken breasts, sliced Dill sprigs for garnish Method 1. In a large pot add the extra-virgin olive oil…

Complimenting the European wine varietals at High Country Victoria’s Ros Ritchie wines cellar door, Essentials Megan Chalmers has put together a collection of French recipes to indulge in this winter. Stay tuned to Essentials for more classic French recipes and an exclusive Q&A with award-winning winemaker Ros Ritchie. French Onion Soup Serves 6 Flavourings 2 bay leaves 12 black peppercorns 6 large sprigs of thyme Soup 4 tbsp unsalted butter 4 tbsp olive oil 8…