Moora Citrus summer feast with Fervor

We visited the country town of Moora on the weekend, a couple of hours’ drive north of Perth, invited by Moora Citrus to a feast set right in the orchard to celebrate the harvest of their Midknight Summer Oranges.

The degustation meal was prepared by Fervor, who hail from Busselton and travel around Western Australia, putting on extraordinary pop-up dining events in unique locations around the state. Their menus focus on locally sourced produce and Australian native ingredients foraged or supplied by specialist producers, and for this dinner, incorporated Moora Citrus oranges in many forms and textures. We attended a Fervor long table degustation event back in April as part of this year’s East Drink Perth – it was an enthralling, interactive experience, and I was excited to have a chance at another Fervor adventure.

It was a sensational citrus-infused feast that began in the late afternoon. Even before we took our places at the table for the 7-course dinner, we enjoyed orange mojitos with plenty of fresh mint; meaty strips of emu chorizo, little curls of whiting with orange gel, and bursty prawns sprinkled with orange powder. My favourite courses were the macadamia with lemon myrtle; quandong and ricotta with wattle seed crumble; Albany sardines with sour cream and sea celery – all with orange, of course, matched with wines from Olive Farm. I’ll admit now that I had secretly anticipated overdosing on oranges and feeling like I could never look at another orange again – but although orange was in every course, we never reached overload because we appreciated its diversity in exquisite, masterful disguises: bite-sized segments, fine zesty threads, fragrant oils, gels, powders, sorbet, wafer-thin crisps…

But the meal wasn’t just memorable because of Fervor’s virtuosity; it was special because we shared the experience with the Moora Citrus family. Their dream is to bring Moora Citrus to the world, and I reckon they’ll do it. Moora isn’t known as a food destination yet, but there’s definite potential – and it may well start with oranges.

DSCF1760The orchard was once a sheep paddock, with the first orange trees planted around ten years ago. It now covers 210 hectares, growing mandarins, Navel oranges, and Midknight oranges, a late season seedless Valencia variety that’s extremely juicy (I can attest to the juiciness).

The table setting included a Midknight Summer orange for each guest. Moora Citrus began picking the Midknights only a few weeks ago and they should be available in shops (many independent grocers, IGA, Foodworks and Fresh Provisions) until around Christmas. The table setting included a Midknight Summer Orange for each guest. I love that these juicy beauties are seedless, and even better that they’re grown right here in Western Australia.

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DSCF1771-2Whiting

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DSCF1117Prawns

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DSCF1131Macadamia, lemon myrtle

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DSCF1170Quandong, ricotta, wattle seed

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DSCF1235Albany sardines, sea celery

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DSCF1309Duck breast, salt bush

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DSCF1387Plating the first dessert of meringue with Geraldton wax

DSCF1410Smoking the second dessert of honey ice cream and pepper berry

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