Annie Smithers
is the owner and chef of du Fermier in Trentham, Victoria. She is a food editor of The Saturday Paper.

By this author

Food March 13, 2021

Roasted beetroot with miso, sesame seeds and silken tofu

It’s been a crazy cold summer here in central Victoria. Sometimes late in the afternoon, the temperature drops into single figures. So my standard batch of easy after-work summer dinner dishes have seemed a little less appropriate. And now that autumn …

Food February 27, 2021

Summer tarts

Produce gluts are now upon us. For all the home gardeners out there, this is the time of year that tomatoes and zucchinis become slightly problematic – there are just so many of them. Whereas tomato growing is not guaranteed to be full of joy – some …

Food February 13, 2021

Quail with nectarine and rose petals

The novel and subsequent film Like Water for Chocolate immortalised the combination of quail and rose petals as a romantic dish. So with Valentine’s Day upon us, what could be a more fitting union to revisit? Quails have been domesticated …

Food January 30, 2021

Strawberry meringue cake

I am not sure whether it is the mousse or the meringue that is the hero of this dish. They are delicious together but also wonderful apart. This type of meringue is known as a Swiss meringue, which is made when the egg whites and the sugar are combined …

Food December 19, 2020

Christmas pork

This year has left me longing to live a quieter, simpler life. One where I tread more gently upon the earth. So for Christmas, I’m looking for an old-fashioned favourite. This variation of a roasted pork loin fits the bill nicely. First, make sure …

Food December 12, 2020

Hot-smoked ocean trout with green salad

As the year draws to its inevitable close, my thoughts turn to Christmas. For me it will be a more muted celebration, as this year we suffered loss on so many levels that we would never have thought possible before 2020. It will be a chance for my sister …

Food November 28, 2020


Dry biscuits. I remember the standards from when I was a child. Saos and Saladas. Ritz, Savoy and Jatz. And Vita-Weats. All still readily available and all living up to their name. Dry by name and dry by nature. The word biscuit has its roots in Latin, …

Food November 14, 2020

Chicken mousseline sausages with petits pois à la française

Of all the pretty green spring vegetables, it is peas that bring me the most pleasure. I find them at their most sublime when they’re small and sweet and tender, so early in the season I harvest them as soon as the little globes start forming in their …

Food October 24, 2020

Almond raspberry slice

I came across a very unnerving statistic the other day. Apparently 24,000 cookbooks are being published annually. This doesn’t include the bloggers and other contributors to recipes on the internet, or, of course, weekly columns such as this one in …