Monday, September 21, 2009

Tie me kangaroo down, sport.

Mrs Beeton touches on the subject of Australian Cookery. Which for a British woman in 1861 is rather progressive...and unusual.

I'm not convinced that she actually knew anything about Australian food, but let's see what she says.


Cookery in Australia is of course English in character, while in the hotels the French cuisine plays a prominent part just as it does in England. The various dishes which are peculiar to the country are those obtained from animals and fruits indigenous to the soil.

is plentiful and good, and includes nearly all the varieties exsteemed in England except the sole, which is not found in any Australian waters' but there are many other varieties unknown in England, such as trumpeter, schnapper, flat-heard, barracouta, etc.

grow abundantly in most parts of Australia. Sour sop, a fruit which in its ripe condition resembles the custard apple, may in its green state be cooked and served as a vegetable. Paw paw also serves the doule purpose of fruit and vegetable, for it is equally excellend boiled while in a green, unripe condition, and served with white sauce, or eaten when ripe with wine and sugar. The choko is a vegetable little known, although it grows freely in many parts of Australia. It is excellent plainly boiled and served with white sauce. Pumpkins, trombone, vegetable and custard marrows are very plentiful.

is so plentiful in many parts of Australia that many varieties may there be had for the picking.

Birds are not plentiful, but the wild ones congregate around the water-holes, and though it is sometimes difficult to procure them in town, the sportsman on the farm will often bring in pigeons, plover, bush turkey, quail, parrots, etc. These birds are almost invariably best when stewed.

Here's a brief list of "Typical Australian Dishes" - some are not so typical, methinks.

Apricot Jam
Apricots and rice
Australian cakes
Bandicoot stewed in milk ?!? I believe Bandicoots are currently endangered so we may be waiting a very long time to try this one
Barracouta, Baked
Black Duck (Wood Goose)
Blackfish in Batter
Black Swan, Roasted or baked Being the state emblem of Western Australia, probably no longer on the menu too.
Cape Gooseberries
Choko, to Boil
Cod Steaks
Coma What the? And I can't even google it properly
Fish Klosh
Gill Birds, Jugged
Gramma Pie or Tart
Grandilla CreamGrandilla Jelly
Green Fig Jam
Groper, Head and Soulders, boiled
Guava Jelly
Island Blue Geese, Roast
Kaka, or Parrot
Kangaroo Is actually pretty darn tasty... I'm surprised she doesn't have emu on the list. I think Australia is the only country in the world that eats both its' national animals.
Kangaroo tail, curried
Kangaroo Tail Fricassee
Kangaroo Tail Soup
Kawai, Baked And not the Japanese for cute, it's some kind of fish
King Fish, Baked, with tomatoes
Loquat Jelly
Loquat Pie or Tart
Mallee Hen, Baked
Melbourne Pancakes
Murray Cod, Boiled
Parrot Pie
Paw paw, Baked
Prickley Pear or Cactus Fruit Jelly
Pukaki, Jugged
Pumpkin Pie
Rosella Jelly I believe she means the flowers and not the birds
Schanpper, Baked
Scrub Turkey, Roast
Sour sop, to boil
Terrapin, to boil
Trumpeter, Baked, with tomatoes
Trumpeter, Boiled
Waikato Scones
Wallaby, Roast
Water-Melon, preserved

I'm not sure what half of these are, but some will definitely be on the menu. Stay tuned.

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