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 October 05, 2019

Stuffed rainbow trout with dill and broad bean pilaf

The science of taste is complex. We take for granted the extraordinary job our tongue does. Its ability to identify sweet, sour, salty, bitter and umami tastes and transmit these to the gustatory cortex for evaluation is not something many of us think …

Food September 21, 2019

Jam doughnuts

I seem to have had a long affinity with strawberry jam. As a child, I had a terrible speech impediment – not only was I late to speaking but, when I did start, most of my words were unintelligible at worst and laughable at best. I am still reminded …

Food September 07, 2019

Stuffed leeks

As the first glimmers of spring arrive in pockets of Victoria, I still have a long wait before I can enjoy the “classic” spring vegetables. Our little farm is situated atop a hill and, while the soil is fabulous and the water plentiful, being more …

Food August 24, 2019


It’s blood orange season. Which means I’m busily making the most of one of the truly seasonal citrus fruits. I feature blood orange on the dessert menu, use blood orange segments in salads, and make copious amounts of blood orange cordial. I’m using …

Food August 03, 2019

Apple and prune flaugnarde

I would normally just go ahead and name this dish apple and prune clafoutis. But it’s not. It has exactly the same custard mix as a clafoutis and it is poured over fruit and baked. But it’s not a clafoutis. A clafoutis comes from the Limousin region …

Food July 20, 2019

Persian vegetable stew

There is something about these long, grey, cold days that makes me revisit my favourite television series. While there is so much new television coming at us from every angle, there is something comforting about old favourites. They are often like food, …

Food July 06, 2019

Oat crumble, oatcakes and steel-cut oat pilaf

The wild oat, Avena fatua, is a common plant that is as tall as its relative the cereal oat. It is also a pernicious weed that has infested sowing fields for centuries, is difficult to remove and is absolutely useless as a grain crop. No wonder …

Food June 22, 2019

Beef bourguignon

For me, there is always a correlation between classical music and classic recipes. While it may be argued that the music of Lully or Bach or Saint-Saëns simply reflected the trend of the moment, the sheer longevity of classical music sets it apart. Modern …

Food June 08, 2019

Roasted quince with spiced quince cake and whipped ricotta

The days are shorter, the skies are blacker, and winter is upon us. The vestiges of late autumn fruit still linger at the greengrocer. If you are not a preserver but have pantry shelves lined with quinces for “tomorrow”, there is still time to indulge …