Monday, February 25, 2013

How to fix Queensland wine: Terry Morris

"Morris said that if every adult Queenslander purchased two bottles of Queensland produced wine per year, replacing some of the interstate and imported wines they purchase, this would create sales of six million bottles per year. " more on

Friday, February 15, 2013

Chocolate Ganache Tarts With Balsamic Roasted Strawberries

A delectable chocolate ganache tart, topped with LiraH Strawberry Balsamic roasted strawberries and fresh cream!
From chef Miriam Spina
Difficulty: easy
Time to prepare: 30 minutes
Serves: 6


200g Dark Chocolate
300ml Cream
2 tbs Icing Sugar
6 Ready Made Shortcrust Tart Shells
1 Punnet Strawberries
LiraH Caramelised Strawberry Balsamic


Quarter strawberries and mix with icing sugar and a good drizzle of LiraH caramelised strawberry balsamic. Roast in a hot oven until soft and a syrup has formed.
In a saucepan, place chocolate and 3/4 of the cream. Keep over low heat until well combined.
Fill tart shells with chocolate ganache and refrigerate until firm. 
Once cooled, top with roasted strawberries and fresh whipped cream!


For something a little more cheeky, use icecream instead of fresh cream!


Order your Lirah products online or pick them up from the Stanthorpe Visitor Information Centre or from  Brinx Deli on the main street of Stanthorpe.
Pick up your fresh strawberries direct from the Strawberry Fields farm, just outside of town.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Sun, sand, surf ... and wine?

"I wasn't expecting a wine like this . . . not from the surf-washed, Hawaiian shirt-splattered, pineapple-infested state of Queensland.
From a list of labels I'd never heard of, I opted for the Boireann Mourvedre Tannat 2008. My God, it sang. Those aromatics, that dense yet joyous fruit, the structural integrity . . . this was not some florid, hot and bothered Aussie red. It was the kind of interesting cool climate wine anyone, anywhere, would proudly serve a dinner guest. I stared at the glass and murmured "Queensland, why have you been hiding this away?"
During the days following that first memorable meal at the Vineyard Cafe in the heart of the Granite Belt wine region, explanations emerged. One was this: Queensland has been hiding this vinous treasure from itself."

Lamb Fettuccine with confit cherry tomatoes - from the Barrel Room Cafe @ Ballandean Estate

While the Barrelroom Cafe at Ballandean Estate is taking a well deserved break until the 23rd February 2013, we get to share a delicious recipe from head chef, Matt Wells.

This recipe takes a little forward planning. It is best to start a day in advance to get the lamb cooked and to allow the stock to cool. It may seem like a lot of work, but this pasta is a real treat! The sugar in the sauce helps overcome the fattiness of the lamb. Any type of pasta works with this recipe.

Lamb Fettuccine with confit cherry tomatoes


1 lamb boned shoulder or leg
1 litre lamb/beef stock
1 carrot, peeled and sliced
1 onion, peeled and quartered
¼ celery, rough chopping
500g fettuccine, cooked
100g butter, plus extra
1 punnet of cherry tomatoes
½ bunch basil
½ Italian parsley, finely chopped
1 tablespoon sugar


Cut lamb into large chucks and put in a roasting tray, add thyme, onions, carrot and celery. Cover with stock. Cover with foil and place in a 180°C oven for 2-3 hours or until lamb is nice and tender.
When tender take out of oven and cool slightly. When cool enough to touch; break up the lamb pieces to separate all the fat from the meat. Throw the fat and vegetables out and set the meat aside. Let the stock cool, as this will be the base of the sauce. When cool, the fat will solidify and it can be removed easily.

In a large fry pan, add the stock, lamb, a knob of butter and cherry tomatoes, place on the heat. When boiling, add your cooked pasta, a little bit more butter, seasoning, a pinch of sugar, chopped parsley, whole basil leaves. Toss till all mixed together.

Serve and eat immediately. Grate some parmesan over the top to finish. YUM!