Matt Wilkinson (Mr), chef and owner of Melbourne eatery Pope Joan, and Sharlee Gibb (Mrs) from Mr & Mrs Wilkinson are joining us on the Festival Village Main Stage, demonstrating how to create two of their delicious dishes...
CHICKEN AND MISO SALAD
MR I like to whip up this quick, simple lunch salad from time to time when I’m in a rush (the poached chicken can be made up in advance and refrigerated until needed). It’s very flexible and you can pretty much use anything you have to hand, really, swapping the chicken for salmon, tinned tuna, sautéed beef or pork or taking the meat out all together and adding more veggies like beans, broccoli or peas.
1 x 200 g (7 oz) free-range boneless, skinless chicken breast
180 g (6 1/2 oz) soba noodles
1 cucumber, diced
1 carrot, cut into thin strips or grated
3 spring onions (scallions), sliced
salt flakes and freshly ground Black pepper
chilli sauce, to serve (optional)
1 tablespoon togarashi (Japanese chilli spice blend)
1 1/2 tablespoons red miso paste
1 teaspoon white sesame seeds
2 tablespoons mirin
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
75 ml (2 1/2 fl oz) non-GMO
Bring 500 ml (17 fl oz/2 cups) water to the boil in a saucepan. Add the chicken breast, reduce the heat and simmer gently for 6 minutes, then remove the pan from the heat and leave the chicken to poach for 15 minutes, or until the liquid is cool enough for you to remove the meat with your fingers. Dice the chicken breast and set aside.
To make the dressing, mix together the togarashi, miso and sesame seeds in a small bowl until combined. Whisk in the mirin, soy sauce and rice vinegar then lightly whisk in the oil.
Cook the soba noodles in a saucepan of boiling water as per the packet instructions, rinse under cold water and add to a large mixing bowl together with the poached chicken and all the other ingredients. Pour over the dressing and mix together thoroughly, then leave to sit for 3 minutes to allow the noodles to absorb all the flavours. Season to taste and serve with a little chilli sauce, if you like (I do).
TIP: For extra flavour, try adding aromatics like herbs and spices or citrus rind to the poaching liquid (which can also be kept and used later as chicken stock). Togarashi is a Japanese spice mixture available at good Asian supermarkets and specialty stores – if you don’t have any to hand you can always swap in an all-purpose pepper seasoning instead.
MRS Taking the time to make this pastry is well worth it and will win you some serious brownie points. I used apricots and nectarines here but you can use any stone fruit you like.
150 g (51/2 oz) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1 cm (1/2 in) cubes
200g (7oz/11/3cups)plain (all-purpose) flour
100 g (31/2 oz) sour cream
400g (14oz)mixedberries (such as raspberries, blueberries and strawberries)
100g (31/2oz)apricots, quartered and stones removed
100g (31/2oz)nectarines, quartered and stones removed
50g (13/4 oz) raw (demerara) sugar
1 free-range egg yolk, beaten
vanilla ice cream or softly whipped cream, to serve
Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F/Gas 4) and insert a baking tray to heat up.
Add the butter and flour to a food processor and pulse together until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs, then pour over the sour cream and pulse again to form a soft dough.
Transfer the dough to the centre of a 30 cm (12 in) square of baking paper and shape it into a rough circle, then wrap it tightly and transfer to the fridge to chill for 15 minutes.
Combine the berries, apricot and nectarine slices in a large bowl. Add the sugar and gently mix together. Set aside.
Remove the dough from the fridge and roll it out into a rough circle approximately 5 mm (1/4 in) thick. Remove the top sheet of baking paper and arrange the fruit in the centre of the pastry circle, being sure to leave a 4–5 cm (11/2–2 in) border around the outside.
Fold the sides of the pastry over to enclose the fruit, repairing any breaks in the pastry as necessary, then transfer the crostata, still on the baking paper, to the hot baking tray. Brush the pastry with the beaten egg yolk and bake for 60 minutes, or until the pastry is golden and flaky and the fruit is warmed through.
Leave to cool slightly, then cut into slices and serve warm with ice cream or cream.
Catch Matt on the Festival Village Main Stage on Sunday 20 May, 11.15am