There’s a gorgeous photo of branches with autumn foliage decorating the ceiling of Melbourne café, South of Johnston, smack bang in the middle of All Day Café, new from Murdoch Books.
It seems like autumn at this popular daytime café is celebrated in style. “To welcome the new season we carry branches and bunches of foliage into the café, light groups of candles and lamps, stack piles of warm blankets and throws to wrap up in, and bring out all our vintage board games,” writes Stuart McKenzie, who opened the café in an old factory building in Collingwood in 2012.
“Autumn is when we light the wood-burning heater for the first time of the year. With logs cut and stacked against the wall, galvanized tubs filled with kindling and pine cones, and the crackling warmth of the fire, the armchairs near the fireplace are the most coveted locations for breakfast.”
South of Johnston
McKenzie clearly has a certain amount of je ne sais quoi in the way he has fitted out South of Johnston. Interspersed throughout the recipes and right-on-trend images are his thoughts on everything from arranging flowers and using herbs as a table decoration, to his love for vintage butter knives and how he likes to leave his linen a little crumpled (so the rustic texture shows through).
If you love the urban café style and are inspired to bring something of it into your own home, you’ll love All Day Café with its stylish tips and recipes. There are lots of favourites such as Flourless chocolate cake, Chocolate brownies, Ricotta hotcakes, Croque monsieur and Pulled pork burger with apple slaw.
There are simple recipes, like Berry and Banana Salad, and more complex ones like Mushrooms with Hummus and Dukkah made from scratch. The recipe here appeals as an Autumn favourite, for it is rich and satisfying and utterly delicious.
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PAPPARDELLE WITH DUCK RAGU
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 duck marylands (leg quarters)
1 carrot, finely chopped
1 celery stalk, finely chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 teaspoons fennel seeds, ground
250 ml (9 fl oz/1 cup) red wine
1 orange, zest removed in strips with a potato peeler
1 cinnamon stick
500 ml (17 fl oz/2 cups) chicken stock or vegetable stock
400 g (14 oz) tin crushed tomatoes
500 g (1 lb 2 oz) pappardelle pasta
2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf (Italian) parsley
4 tablespoons finely grated pecorino cheese
Heat the olive oil in a large heavy-based saucepan or flameproof casserole dish over medium heat. Working in two batches, add the duck marylands and cook, turning once, for 6–8 minutes until golden. Remove from the pan and set aside.
Add the carrot, celery, onion and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, for 6–8 minutes until tender.
Add the fennel and stir to combine, then return all the duck to the pan. Add the wine, strips of orange zest and cinnamon stick and bring to a simmer. Add the stock and tomatoes and return to a simmer, then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 1½ to 2 hours, or until the duck is tender.
Remove the duck from the pan and set aside to cool. When cool enough to handle, shred the meat, discarding the bones. Return the shredded duck meat to the pan over low heat, stir to combine, and season with sea salt and freshly ground pepper. Cover and keep warm.
Meanwhile, cook the pappardelle in a saucepan of boiling salted water following the manufacturer’s instructions. Drain well, add to the ragu (in batches if all the pasta doesn’t fit in your pan) and toss to combine. Sprinkle with the parsley and pecorino before serving.
Recipe and images from All Day Café, by Stuart McKenzie, published by Murdoch Books, and reproduced with their permission.
This story originally appeared in PS News online.