Sum­mer a great time for food­ies

QT Magazine - - FOOD & WINE - WITH CHEF GARY DUERDEN FROM DOVE­TAILS RES­TAU­RANT

IF THERE’S one thing that we chefs love about sum­mer, it can be summed up in one word.

Fresh.

With the warmer weather, a whole new plethora of food be­comes avail­able, es­pe­cially fruit.

There’s noth­ing bet­ter when you’re in the kitchen than work­ing with peaches, nec­tarines, cher­ries, straw­ber­ries, and of course, man­goes from our own state of Queens­land.

There’s a cou­ple of dishes that just scream ‘sum­mer’ on the menu. Firstly, I’m proud of our pan-roasted duck breast, with cele­riac puree, pick­led cher­ries, sweet potato crisps and duck jus. Plus if you re­ally want the def­i­ni­tion of ‘fresh’, try our Aus­tralian At­lantic salmon with fresh sum­mer greens and le­mon olive oil dress­ing.

This time of year, there’s a great choice of fresh cher­ries to fea­ture with our duck, then we pickle the rest.

Ev­ery­one loves sum­mer, and we adore win­ter for dif­fer­ent rea­sons, but we are so lucky to live in Ip­swich. I’ve worked in Europe, where at cer­tain times of year you can’t even get a let­tuce. Sourc­ing lo­cal pro­duce is al­ways im­por­tant, we try to source as much lo­cally as we can, but of­ten you must shop around. Things such as zuc­chini flow­ers can only be bought on the Sun­shine Coast.

Our pot-roasted, free-range chicken supreme is served with smoked pancetta, rata­touille, pearl cous cous and chimichurri pesto.

The chicken has a de­li­cious rata­touille with it, which is full of great sum­mer veg­eta­bles, along with a chimichurri pesto on the side. If you’ve never tasted the fa­mous Ar­gen­tinian flavours of chimichurri I highly rec­om­mend it. It goes so well with the rata­touille.

Sum­mer dishes tend to be lighter, brighter and usu­ally full of flavours, whereas win­ter foods tend to be com­fort foods, and heav­ier dishes, so that’s also re­flected in two of my favourite desserts on the menu.

Stone fruits are so re­fresh­ing, you can put them in the fridge, use them in desserts and they only grow this time of year, so you must love that stuff.

You can’t go past my mango and co­conut panna cotta which is served with an al­mond tu­ile and Per­sian fairy floss. They are such great com­bi­na­tions of flavours.

Plus who doesn’t love a good messy dessert? My eton mess is a mix of meringue, pas­sion­fruit curd, straw­berry sor­bet and Chan­tilly creme. The flavours work so well to­gether and it’s some­how sweet yet re­fresh­ing. It’s a dish that is per­fect for sum­mer.

PHOTO: ROB WIL­LIAMS

Dove­tails Res­tau­rant sum­mer menu in­cludes Chicken Supreme.

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