On the surface, the small bar in Newtown, Sydney, filled with antlers and aptly named Moose appears to have little in common with Cafe Felix, an Ann Arbor mainstay known for French-style tapas. The commonality the restaurants share appears in the form of a carefully roasted mushroom, upended to form a small cup and filled with a medley of cheeses. As a college student, I would stretch my food budget in order to indulge in the stuffed mushrooms bathed in a sage-cream sauce at Cafe Felix. The small dish had such an impact on my memory, I tried to recreate it to serve at the first dinner party I held in my first flat. As is always the case, I managed to serve my reconstructed masterpiece to a guest that despises mushrooms. I tucked the recipe away until recently, when an impromptu visit to Moose in Newtown revived my interest. Apart from tasting delicious, this cheese post also serves as a timely reminder that there are only 19 more days until the close of the 2nd annual recipe contest.
Pavlos Dionyssopoulos, Still Life with Mushrooms, 1997
wood, paper and plexiglass, 46.2 x 40 x 40 cm, Private collection