Bringing Bondi Trattoria To Your Home Kitchen

Parmesan & Lemon Thyme Crusted Pork Cutlet, from Bondi Trattoria.
Parmesan & Lemon Thyme Crusted Pork Cutlet, from Bondi Trattoria.

Across the road from Australia’s most famous beach, Bondi Trattoria has been serving local and international visitors for more than 30 years. Known fondly as the “Tratt”, this Bondi institution has a family-friendly, relaxed vibe and great views down the hill towards the beach.

Owners Joe Pavlovich and Alasdair France, otherwise known as the Two Fat Guys, have worked together and been friends for 18 years. When the previous owners were giving up the Tratt, they jumped at the chance to make it their own.

With Joe as executive chef and Alasdair as general manager, they serve a modern Italian menu with an emphasis on the best Australian ingredients. In the introduction to their cookbook, Bondi Trattoria: Modern Italian With A View, they describe the restaurant as “a local, a part of the community that welcomes you back, or welcomes you for the first time.”

Joe Pavlovich and Alasdair France, owners of Bondi Trattoria.

The book takes you into their world and inside the kitchen, where the secrets behind many of their delicious pasta, pizza, vegetarian, mains and antipasti dishes are revealed, not to mention their wonderful desserts and tempting cocktails and frappés. There are some menu staples, some new dishes and even a chapter of recipes from their team, some of which have appeared on the Bondi Trattoria menu.

If you’ve dined at Bondi Trattoria and loved the food you’ll love this book, but even if you haven’t, this lovely book will bring a touch of the sea air into your kitchen. It would also make a great gift for overseas friends, as it has landscape views as well as stunning food photography.

Buy your copy of  Bondi Trattoria from Book Depository now, with free delivery worldwide

Parmesan & Lemon Thyme Crusted Pork Cutlet With Agresto & Figs In Prosciutto

Serves 4

4 x 300 g (10½ oz) pork cutlets, fat cleaned off
200 ml (7 fl oz) ghee
4 fresh ripe figs, halved
8 prosciutto slices
2 lemons, halved and deseeded
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Agresto sauce

125 g (4½ oz) walnuts
1 garlic clove
2 bunches flat-leaf (Italian) parsley, leaves picked
1 bunch basil, leaves picked
125 ml (4 fl oz) extra virgin olive oil
125 ml (4 fl oz) verjuice

Parmesan & lemon thyme crust

2 eggs
60 ml (2 fl oz) milk
250 g (9 oz) panko breadcrumbs
150 g (5½ oz) parmesan cheese, finely grated
¼ bunch lemon thyme, leaves picked and roughly chopped
4 tablespoons plain (all-purpose) flour

Agresto sauce:
Place the walnuts, basil, parsley and verjuice into a blender and blend on a high speed for 30 to 40 seconds. Slowly add the oil and blend well, add water if needed, season to taste. Keep to the side.

Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F). Wrap the fig halves with the prosciutto and set to the side.

Clean the top of the bones on the pork cutlets. Use a sharp knife to ensure there is no meat left on the bone. This is not completely necessary but it will make your dish look much nicer. Place the pork cutlets between two pieces of plastic wrap and lightly bash with a mallet or saucepan to flatten out. Crack the eggs in a bowl, add the milk and whisk together.

In another bowl, add the panko crumbs, parmesan and lemon thyme leaves and combine. Place the flour on a plate. Season the pork cutlets and lightly flour them, dusting off the excess. Dip the cutlets into the egg mixture, covering the cutlets completely, then dip them into the breadcrumb mixture.

Heat a large saucepan on the stovetop to medium-high heat with half of the ghee. Place two pork cutlets in the pan and cook each side until golden brown. Once browned, place the cutlets on a tray lined with baking paper. Strain the ghee through a sieve, wipe out the pan and add the remaining ghee. Repeat for the remaining cutlets.

Place the wrapped figs flat side down on the pan and cook for 1 minute. Place on the tray with the pork cutlets and bake in the oven for about 12 to 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and rest for 2 to 3 minutes. Place the cutlets on serving plates with the wrapped figs and agresto sauce. Serve with lemon wedges.

Recipe and image from Bondi Trattoria: Modern Italian With A View by Joe Pavlovich and Alasdair France. Published by New Holland Publishers and reproduced with the publisher’s permission.

This story originally appeared in PS News online.

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