Published on September 30th, 2014 | by Ann Rickard0
Relish Restaurant – Noosa Springs
The prawns are back on the specials menu at Noosa Springs and it’s all about flavour-filled, light spring eating – at a bargain price.
Chef Aden Moriarty has rightfully earned a reputation for presenting stylish food on his a la carte menu and also for generously putting on these regular specials – always starring three dishes featuring the one hero ingredient given different treatments for $25 each, along with a glass of wine.
He keeps the specials on for a couple of months at a time which means you can easily go back three times to try out each dish.
Or, in our case, be greedy and order all three at once. (To be shared between the two of us, we’re not that greedy.)
First up, the prawn salad.
Fat fresh prawns marinated in garlic and chilli are given a royal accompaniment of a fancy deconstructed salad.
Strips of sweet mango lay prettily over iceberg lettuce (the only kind for prawns in my opinion) with slivers of avocado. With a creamy pink cocktail sauce this one is so simple, so fresh, so appropriate.
The prawns are sourced from down the road in Mooloolaba. That’s a given.
The wine gives you a choice of Hungerford Hill Chardonnay or an Amadio Riesling.
Next, a Penang prawn curry: plenty of prawns in a spicy, creamy sauce sitting on wilted bok choy with perfectly fluffy coconut rice.
You can’t ask for more than that from a prawn, can you? We loved this one.
But the big surprise to our palates came with the rice-crusted sweet and sour prawns, and the presentation was show-stopping.
Standing up in a crown, the prawns looked regal as they made their way around the Noosa Springs terrace during a busy weekday lunch. The rice crust provided an intriguing texture: crunchy and dry on the outside, juicy and fleshy on the inside.
The salad beneath them – mint, bean shoots, green paw paw – came with such a perfectly balanced sweet sour dressing, I asked for the recipe.
“There is no oil in the dressing but it’s important to get the balance of sweet and sour just right,” Aden said, and agreed to let me share the recipe here.
Anything you eat at Relish at the Noosa Springs country club tastes better overlooking the world-class golf course.
The surroundings are glamorous yet welcoming. It makes you feel privileged to have such a swish facility available to all of us.
In many countries, such a renowned country club would be open only to members willing to pay a hefty annual fee.
We finished our prawn lunch with a passionfruit pavlova.
Three white clouds of meringue sandwiched a tangy, passionfruit/lime curd.
With a swirl of raspberry coulis and a melon salad, the pavlova went down such a treat it was all we could do to stop ourselves making obscene little murmuring noises while we ate it.
Some of the new spring dishes which will please include a prosciutto, pear and haloumi salad, and twice-cooked duck with choy sum, shitaki mushrooms and water chestnuts.
The house-made gnocchi is vegetarian with ratatouille, fried basil and shaved pecorino. Meat lovers will be impressed with the wagu rump (Darling Downs 365 days grain fed) with golden potato fondant.
The trevally comes with saffron kipflers, blistered cherry tomatoes, wilted spinach and preserved lemon butter. That’s a lot to see you through the next two seasons, along with the prawns which stay on special until the end of October.
The molten centre Belgian chocolate pudding with hokey pokey ice-cream and strawberry salad never leaves the menu.
I’d stage a riot if it did.
Phone: 5440 3333