Home cooks and mixologists can recreate these iconic recipes until venues can welcome them back.
If you’re getting sick of takeaway pizza boxes and you’re ready to step up your game, we’ve got some recipes for you. Sydney’s most renowned chefs and bartenders are helping you master iconic dishes and cocktails this lockdown with recipes from Bopp & Tone (Sydney CBD), SoCal (Neutral Bay), The Butler (Potts Point) and Tap Rooms (The Rocks). The best part? You can take the credit for a restaurant-quality meal and brag to the housemates about your impeccable culinary skills (just be sure to hide the recipes).
Applejack Hospitality – Tommy’s Margarita
Ever wondered who’s behind these restaurants and more specifically, why they all have the exact same tasting Tommy’s Margarita on the menu? It’s Sydney-based hospitality group Applejack, the duo hospitality heavyweights Hamish Watts and Ben Carrol. Tommy’s Margarita is a crowd favourite at all Applejack restaurants and Group Bars Manager Lachy Sturrock has just shared his 3 ingredient recipe.
Want to brush up on Tommy’s facts first? (If the answer is no, skip to the next paragraph). The concoction was invented by Tequila enthusiast Julio Bermejo at Tommy’s Mexican Restaurant in San Francisco, California. The key difference between the Tommy’s and a Classic Margarita is the use of Agave nectar, instead of Orange liqueur. A Tommy’s Margarita is typically served over ice, instead of straight up, and more times than not – no salt rim.
60ml Calle 23 Blanco Tequila
30ml Fresh Lime Juice
15ml Crawley’s Agave Syrup (Available to order online at Dan Murphy’s, although you can find an alternative agave at any health food store)
1 Lime Wedge or Wheel
- First, chill your cocktail glass with ice and set it aside.
- Add all our ingredients to a cocktail shaker with ice and shake well for 10-15 seconds.
- Double strain your cocktail into your chilled glass over ice, and garnish with a healthy wedge or wheel of lime.Watch Lachy make this cocktail on Applejack‘s IGTV here
Bopp & Tone – Australian King Prawns
With a menu centred around share food, Mediterranean flavours and dishes kissed by fire, it was only fair Bopp & Tone gave up the recipe for their signature Australian King Prawns. Head Chef & Fisherman Sa Va’afusuaga has a wealth of knowledge about premium seafood, where to find it, and how to make sure it shines on the plate. These prawns are a delicious entrée to share (not that you’ll want to) marinated in a melange of spices and bursting with flavour.
(Serves 5 entrée portions)
10 x Whole Green Prawns
2 x Lemons
½ x Bunch Oregano
30g x Long Red Chilli
30g x Garlic Cloves (Peeled)
200ml x Olive Oil
- Keeping the shell on and using a sharp serrated knife, cut along the back of the prawns to butterfly from the head to just above the tail ¾s of the way through. Gently wash the heads clean then place to the side ready for the marinade.
- To make the marinade, de-seed the long red chillis and roughly chop. Add into a small blender with the peeled garlic and picked oregano leaves. Gently pulse the blender – you do not want to over-blend the mixture into a paste otherwise it will burn before the prawns are cooked. The ingredients can also be chopped with a knife if a blender is not available.
- Next, place the blended ingredients in a bowl and add the olive oil. Add the prawns in the marinade making sure there is plenty covering the flesh side. Allow them to marinate for at least 2 hours.
- Preheat BBQ or grill on the highest setting available. Season the prawns with sea salt & cracked pepper then grill flesh side down for approximately 3 minutes. Flip over and grill shell side for 1 minute.
- Slice the lemons in half and grill on the flesh side at the same time as the prawns. Squeeze over the prawns for serving.Check out the process and finished product on Tik Tok here
Bopp & Tone – Chargrilled Spatchcock
If you’re a die-hard Bopp & Tone fan, we’ve got another banging recipe for you! With the perfect balance of crispy and juicy, their ever so popular Chargrilled Spatchcock is a masterpiece worth aiming for.
4 Whole Smoked Spatchcocks
200ml Natural Yoghurt
1 Punnet Micro Coriander
Sea Salt For Seasoning
150g Fine Salt
150g Caster Sugar
20ml White Vinegar
3 Liters of Water
2 Bay Leaves Picked
2 Tablespoons Black Peppercorns
40g Smoked Paprika
15g Cayenne Pepper
5g Dried Oregano Leaves
20g Brown Sugar
60ml Olive Oil
60ml Canola Oil
15g Peeled Garlic Cloves
- Prepare the brine: combine all ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Chill and set aside.
- Prepare the spatchcock: with a pair of kitchen shears, cut the backbone from the spatchcocks. Next, turn skin side down splayed out. With a sharp knife cut down the side of the breast bone and remove it carefully. Next, cut away the rib cage from the breast.
- Place prepared spatchcocks in brine and leave it there to marinate for 4-6 hours.
- Prepare the marinade: combine all ingredients into a bowl adding the oils last.
- Remove spatchcocks from the brine and rub the marinade into the meat, making sure to cover all areas. Spatchcocks can be marinated overnight and have a shelf life of 3 days in the marinade.
- Cooking the spatchcock: place the marinated spatchcock onto a plate and season the skin with sea salt.
- Place spatchcocks on a hot grill or BBQ skin side down and don’t touch. The skin will go dark brown because of the marinade. Once the skin has rendered and is crispy (approximately 6 mins) gently turn over making sure not to tear the skin. Cook for another 5 mins on the flesh and then transfer to a plate to rest.
- All grills are different so probe the leg or thigh for the liquid to run clear. If when probed the liquid is pink, cook for another couple of minutes on the flesh side.
- To serve: cut the rested spatchcocks down to desired sizes. Serve with a dollop of yoghurt and garnish the micro coriander. Sprinkle with a small amount of olive oil.
SoCal – Market Fish Ceviche
With the restaurant taking inspiration from a Californian surf trip, it’s no wonder everything on the menu is bright and refreshing. The menu is Latin American in style and highlights those signature spicy flavours you’d typically see in Mexico City. One of their most popular dishes is the Market Fish Ceviche, a perfect match for warmer afternoons with a glass of white. Luckily, they’ve dropped the recipe…
100g Market Fish – Snapper
25g Diced Tomato
20g Diced Avocado
Pinch of Salt
10g Sweet Potato Chips
5g Red Chilli
- Add snapper and eschalots to the mixing bowl with 35g of Tigre de Leche to cure the fish. Leave for 5-10 mins.
- Add the rest of the ingredients minus the sweet potato chips and half the coriander.
- Toss together and present in a bowl. Garnish the dish with the remaining coriander and sweet potato chips.Tigre de Leche dressing (Blend all ingredients together, makes 1L)400g Celery
160g Fish scraps (offcuts)
50ml Fish stock
500ml lime juice
1 Habanero Chilli
SoCal – Spicy Senorita Cocktail
SoCal wouldn’t be the hit Mexican restaurant it is without its margaritas. Known for packing a punch of zest and spice, as well as a decent dose of booze, the Spicy Senorita is popular for good reason. And guess what? The bartenders have shared the recipe to fuel your weekend!
600ml x Jalapeno Infused Olmeca ALTOS Plata Tequila
30ml x Lime
15ml x Agave
- Shake and double strain into a chilled rocks glass over ice.
- Garnish with a chilli salt rim and jalapeno slice.
The Butler – Confort Pork Carnitas
Drawing inspiration from diverse cultures and cuisines spanning north, central, and South America, The Butler’s has some truly delectable dishes. Head Chef Amber Doig’s creative flair takes traditional Ibero-American techniques, methods and flavours and puts a modern spin on them. A crowd-pleasing dish is the Confort Pork Carnitas with succulent, slow-cooked meat wrapped in a fresh tortilla. If you’re looking for comfort food, this is Doig’s go-to.
2kg x Pork Shoulder (Bone out and skin off, cut into fist-sized chunks)
2L x Water
5 x Garlic Cloves
5g x Coriander Seeds
5g Cumin Seeds
3 x Bay Leaves
10 x Garlic Cloves
2 x Cinnamon Quills, Toasted
4 x Star-anise Pods, Toasted
5g x Peppercorns, Toasted
4 x Guajillo Chillies, Toasted Whole
2 x Tomatoes, Halved
2 x Oranges, Halved
1 x Carrot, Roughly Chopped
1 x Lime, Halved
4 x Bay Leaves
15g x Mexican Oregano (Or dried marjoram)
250ml x Orange Juice
250ml x White Wine
1kg x Pork Lard (Or a 50/50 combination of vegetable oil & olive oil)
Flour or Corn Tortillas
Shaved or Diced White Onion
Your Preferred Salsas, Hot Sauce & Mexican-style Condiments
- Combine brining solution ingredients in a large container or pot. Stir well to dissolve the salt. Submerge pork pieces in brine, cover, refrigerate and allow to cure for 12 hours.
- Preheat oven to 165°C (no fan). Remove pork from brine and allow to drain. Place pork in a 6-8L deep-roasting dish.
- Add all braising liquid ingredients to the pork, ensuring the meat is covered entirely by liquid. Place in preheated oven and cook for 3.5 hours or until pork is tender. Remove from oven, remove foil and allow to rest for 30 minutes.
- Remove pork from the braise. Strain and reserve stock, which can be used for another braise (the fat can also be used for cooking, and the broth can be used as a flavour enhancer for soups or sauces).
- Heat a skillet or heavy-based pan (cast iron or similar) over medium heat with a little vegetable oil. Fry the pork pieces in batches until the meat is crispy in parts, shredded slightly and heated through. Check flavour, adding more seasoning if necessary.
- Place pork on a serving platter. Arrange salsas, shaved onions, fresh coriander, lime and any other condiments in serving bowls next to the platter. To finish, warm a stack of soft tortillas in a hot pan (10-12 seconds on each side). Keep warm in a cloth napkin, tea towel or another improvised tortilla holder.
- Assemble tacos and pair with a good-quality Mexican beer, tequila or mezcal, or margarita!
The Butler – Please & Thank You Cocktail
Another thing The Butler does exceptionally well is cocktails and we’ve got a favourite. Taking the base of a simple Lychee Martini, the Please & Thank You spices it up with the addition of rosé vermouth, pink grapefruit, vanilla bean and some floral notes thanks to orange blossom water.
30ml Beefeater Gin
15ml Adelaide Hills Distillery Rosé Vermouth (But feel free to substitute with any liqueur/vermouth)
30ml Fresh Lemon Juice
15ml Vanilla Bean Syrup (You will need 1 cup white sugar, 1 cup water and 1 vanilla bean)
30ml Pink Grapefruit Juice (Freshly squeezed or store-bought)
3 Lychees (Fresh or from a tin)
2 Dashes of Orange Blossom Water (You can source from any health food store)
- Firstly, make your vanilla bean syrup. In a small to a medium-sized pot, add your sugar and water over medium heat until the sugar has dissolved.
- Slice the vanilla bean in half lengthways and scrape out all the vanilla into your pot. Add the emptied shell to your pot also. Turn the heat down to low and let simmer for 4-5 minutes, stirring once or twice.
- Place your syrup to the side to chill.
- Fill your cocktail glass with ice to chill it and place it to the side.
- Then, add all your ingredients to a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake well for 10-15 seconds.
- Discard the ice in your glass, and double strain your cocktail into your chilled glass.
- The Butler garnishes with a sprig of baby’s breath flowers fastened on with a mini wooden peg, however, you can garnish as you like!
Tap Rooms – Grilled Peach Salad
This premium brew and smokehouse offers a range of smoked produce from the land and sea, served feast-style. Amongst all meats, it’s great to have a fresh salad in the mix and this Grilled Peach Salad has to be one of our favourites.
6 x Fresh Peaches
250g x Buffalo Ricotta
100g x Smoked Almonds
1 x Bunch of Mesclun Leaves
2 x Types Petit Herbs to Garnish
250ml x Olives Oil
25ml x Fresh Lemon Juice
25ml x Champagne Vinegar
50g x Honey
1/4 Bunch Fresh Thyme
Sea Salt to Taste
- To make the dressing, combine lemon juice, Champagne vinegar, honey & thyme in a bowl. Slowly whisk in olive oil and season with salt. Set aside.
- Cut ½ of the peaches into wedges and grill in a pan and set aside. Slice the other half of the peaches with a mandolin and set aside. Wash and pick the mesclun leaves.
- To assemble the salad, build all the ingredients together with the dressing and garnish with the petit herbs.
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