Every true Australian food lover knows of Neil Perry, and it’s highly likely you’ve heard of his famous restaurants.
In 1986, Neil Perry opened his first restaurant at the north end of Bondi Beach, Blue Water Grill. An Asian-inspired eatery, Blue Water has been closed for thirty years, but this coming Monday Neil Perry and the Rockpool Dining Group team will be launching a pop-up Blue Water Grill till Saturday 24th November.
The pop-up will be hosted at Rockpool’s event space on Bridge Street, formerly home to Jade Temple. Offering lunch and dinner sittings daily, the pop-up will be revisiting the ’80s and serving the Asian dishes and flavours the original restaurant was renowned for. Think retro seafood dining, a menu of around 20 hallmark and mouthwatering dishes, and an ’80s-style cocktail list plus an extensive menu of Australian wines.
Neil Perry himself will be in the kitchen, frying, stir-frying and chargrilling an array of seafood, and mustering up fragrant green curry, coconut sambal, chilli sauces and salsas. Alongside Perry will be seafood expert and former Blue Water Grill manager, John Susman, who originally helped establish Blue Water Grills’ seafood credentials.
“I’m having a flashback thirty-odd years,” says Perry. “I’ve dug out the original menus and summoned up the old flavours – all we need to do is chuck some sand on the floor and it is Blue Water Grill circa 1986 revisited.”
Bookings are available (and going fast), so walk-ins are encouraged – sit at the bar while you wait and soak up a bit of Bondi in the heart of Sydney CBD.
And if you sadly can’t make it to Blue Water Grill next week, never fear – you can take a piece of it home. Neil Perry has shared the restaurants’ infamous Banana Cheesecake recipe, a must-do for Christmas day we think?
Check out the recipe below – guaranteed to wow.
- Preheat oven to 190c (170 fan-forced). Combine biscuit crumbs with butter in a bowl and mix well. Use a flat-bottomed glass to press mixture evenly over base and sides of a lightly greased 24cm springform tin (mixture should come about two-thirds of the way up the side of the tin and be 5mm thick only).
- Using a folded tissue, press the crumb firmly to remove any excess butter. Refrigerate for 30 minutes or until firm.
- In a food processor mix bananas, sugar and lemon juice until combined.
- Add a third of the eggs, process until just combined. Add a third of the cream cheese and process again. Repeat this, alternating with eggs and cream cheese until they are all added. Add the sour cream and process until smooth.
- For the topping, whisk ingredients together in a bowl until smooth.
- Place tin onto a baking sheet. Gently pour filling into crumb crust (it should come to the very top of the crust). Tap the tin gently on the bench to remove any air bubbles.
- Bake for about 45 minutes or until just firm. The cheesecake will be a little “wobbly” in the centre but it will firm as it cools. Do not overcook it. Stand for five minutes at room temperature.
- Pour over topping mixture. Use a spatula to help spread this evenly if necessary. It should be perfectly smooth.
- Return the cheesecake to the oven for five minutes. Remove then stand at room temperature for 10 minutes. Gently run a small knife around the inside of the tin to release the topping from the sides. Refrigerate until cheesecake is cold and firm.
- While the cheesecake is setting, combine passionfruit and sugar syrup in a small bowl. Set aside.
- Remove cheesecake from pan and serve with passionfruit mixture drizzled over the top.
Bake. Eat. Repeat!