Tag Archives: longrain

Longrain, Melbourne Style

Salt and Pepper Silken Tofu with Fried Eschalots and Garlic

You know how you sometimes hear about a cool new restaurant, really like the sound of it, and vow to go there soon only to realize 5 years and many broken dinner promises later that you still haven’t been?

So what happens when this place you have been meaning to eat at turns out to be one of the best dining options in town? Martin Boetz’s Longrain, Melbourne (the sister restaurant to the Sydney flagship) was that place for us.

From the extremely efficient service, the sexy dining room, the brilliant cocktails, to the sublime Thai food (Martin is David Thompson’s protoge, so you wouldn’t expect anything less), we can’t think of anything we don’t like about this place.

Don’t trust the recipe

We have made quite a few tasty recipes from the Longrain cookbook, Modern Thai Food, with a great deal of success. Until the other night. The recipe in question was “Grilled Stuffed Calamari”, which was stuffed with minced pork and Chinese black fungus.

Midway through preparation, with my hands full of minced pork, coriander roots, and fish sauce, Ritsy grabs the 100g packet of dried mushrooms, empties them into a bowl, and moves towards the sink to rehydrate them. All of them.

I tried to explain that there was no way anywhere near that many dried mushrooms were necessary for a 200g quantity of minced pork – but she insisted that the recipe said 4 0z dried black fungus – which, indeed, it did. I decided that the only way to teach Ritsy rule #1 in cooking (don’t trust the recipe), was to let her follow it.

Saturday Night Festivities

A beautiful balmy Saturday night with no other plans meant only one thing for us… a bbq dinner in our courtyard 🙂

Donny was craving meat so he found an awesome looking recipe for grilled beef with a spicy dipping sauce from Neil Perry’s book Balance and Harmony (a purchase inspired after a memorable dinner at Spice Temple last year). Now that the protein was sorted I set out to balance Donny’s desire for meat with some kind of vegetables… I suggested we serve some of the pickled cabbage we’d made a while ago (also from the balance & harmony book) and the cucumber relish from David Thompson’s Modern Thai Food, as we’d been served this as an accompaniment to the much-loved egg net rolls at a recent visit to Longrain and it was quite yummy!

Monday night cooking

Tonight we made Tiger Beer, Chilli Jam and Coconut Mussels from Teage Ezard’s book Lotus: Asian Flavours.

We had some left over chilli jam from last week when we made a super delicious Tom Kha, from the Longrain book Modern Thai Food so preparation for this dish was at a minimum (perfect Monday night cooking!)

The recipe suggested that if you were having trouble sourcing garlic shoots asparagus would be a suitable replacement… We were sceptical about this, but as our local green grocer didn’t have any garlic shoots we had no other choice.

Luckily for us the asparagus complimented the mussels perfectly – I knew everything would be ok once I started smelling the amazing aromas from the wok when Donny put the garlic and asparagus in!