AUSTRALIA

This flag is based on the British maritime Blue Ensign flag. The flag contains the large 7-pointed ‘Commonwealth Star’ and the ‘Southern Cross’ constellation.
COUNTRYAustralia
DishesPavlova, Barbecue feast + Anzac biscuits
Time 2 1/2 hours in total
Effort 6/10
Rough cost £12
COUNTRY Australia
Capital Canberra
Population 25, 639, 600 (51st largest)
Land mass 7, 692, 024 km2 (6th largest)
Languages English
ReligionsVarious

Food for thought

Mwara: I was very lucky this week when researching Australia, to have the help of two friends who come from Gold Coast and were very happy to help with identifying, cooking and eating some classic Australian dishes! It seems that the real strength of Aussie cuisine comes from the huge diversity of cultures living there, with excellent quality Italian, Greek, Asian and European food found, cooked and enjoyed all across the country. Home cooking tends to be simple and tasty.

We went for a typical Australian meal that would be served at an informal get together or a weekend supper. Burgers, Snags (sausages) and Pav (pavlova). It was a very low effort week for me, which I am told is also very Australian! I bought beef and pork and apple burgers from the butcher, tinned pineapple, ready cooked beetroot, Caesar dressing, parmesan shavings and readymade croutons! Courtney got the family pavlova recipe from her mum and came over to cook it for us. It was INCREDBLE. Inches of fluffy, soft, white meringue covered in whipped cream and fruit. I know there will be Kiwis who claim pavlova is a New Zealand dish, but we will worry about that in 2023… Nosh Nosh!

Bridget: All I have to say is – I am now obsessed with Anzac biscuits. They encapsulate everything that is delicious about a British flap-jack but are full of crunchy coconut and come in a chewy, gooey and non-crumbly format.

The biscuits historically are claimed to have been sent by the wives and partners of the soldiers in the Australian and NZ Army Corps during WWI, as the ingredients do not spoil easily. However, there is also a competing story which suggests the biscuits were eaten in the home nations in order to raise money for the war. No debate on how yummy they are though – 10/10!

RECIPES

BARBECUE FEAST

Aussie Burgers

  • Beef or other burger (I used pork and apple to compliment the pineapple). Could be vegetarian.
  • Sliced pineapple, fresh or tinned
  • Cooked beetroot, sliced (can be shop bought)
  • Fried egg
  • Burger buns
  • Sauces such as ketchup and mustard

METHOD

  1. Cook the burgers (BBQ is best).
  2. Fry the eggs until set but with a runny yolk.
  3. Assemble the sandwich with one burger, some sliced pineapple and beetroot, add a fried egg and dress with sauce. Then dig in! A napkin is a good idea.

Snags (sausages)

  • good quality sausages
  • buns
  • sauces

METHOD

  1. COOK. ASSEMBLE. EAT !

Caesar salad

  • Cos lettuce
  • Caesar dressing
  • Croutons
  • Parmesan shavings

METHOD

I have made Caesar salad from scratch but it is a fiddly process. Have no guilt whatsoever buying everything readymade – I have it on good authority that this is the Aussie way.

  1. Mix everything together.
  2. Serve with the BBQ.

Pavlova

INGREDIENTS

  • 8 egg whites (room temp.)
  • 2 cups caster sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp vinegar
  • 1 1/2 vanilla essence

METHOD

  1. Preheat oven to 190 degrees.
  2. Use an electric mixer to beat eggs until stiff white peaks form (can add a pinch of salt at this stage).
  3. Add the sugar, 1 tbsp at a time, beating constantly until this mixture is thick and glossy.
  4. Fold in the vinegar and vanilla essence.
  5. Spoon the mix onto baking paper on a tray in the desired shape.
  6. Reduce the oven temperature to 150 degrees and bake the PAV for 1 hrs 30 mins. When finished, turn off the oven and leave the door ajar for the PAV to cool.
  7. Top with thick whipped cream and fruit!

Anzac biscuits *vegan

These biscuits were actually so easy to make and so delicious. Fresh out of the oven they were warm and rich, and then having cooled down they were more chewy but still buttery and syrupy. YUM! Will 100% make again.

INGREDIENTS

  • 3/4 cup plain flour, sifted
  • 1 cup sugar (I used brown)
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder/bicarb.
  • 1 cup desiccated coconut
  • 125g vegan margarine, melted
  • 2 tbsp golden syrup
  • 3 tbsp boiling water

METHOD

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees and line a tray with baking paper.
  2. Mix the flour, sugar and coconut in a large bowl.
  3. Mix the boiling water and baking powder/bicarb together in a small bowl. The liquid should froth a bit.
  4. Mix this into another bowl that contains the melted margarine and golden syrup.
  5. Combine the wet mix into the dry mix with a wooden spoon.
  6. Scoop just over a teaspoon of mixture and roll into a ball with your hands. Line the balls onto a baking tray with a bit of room in between each.
  7. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown on the top. ENJOY!

Cheers mate and see you in Azerbaijan! M + B

#australia #pavlova #anzac #vegan #travel #worldfood

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