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Great Australian Food

Updated on June 24, 2014

How Tucker turned into Cuisine

Once we lived on English food - it was all we knew. Meat, lots of meat, roast lamb, roast beef, lamb chops, grilled steak, marinated mutton and beef, lamb, lamb and more lamb. We had sausages and bacon for breakfast, lamb cutlets for lunch and at dinner we sat down to roast lamb and 'three veg'.

And three veg it was too. Potatoes, pumpkin and something vaguely green that had been boiled in salted water for at least 20 minutes.

Thank heavens for our wonderful migrants! Just after the Second World War we were blessed with the tastes of Italy and Greece, followed by food which was Lebanese, Turkish, Balkan, Hungarian and, in recent years, Vietnamese, Chilean, Chinese, Thai, Korean, Sri Lankan and Indonesian.

Put them together and what have you got? Great Australian Food!

The Great Australian Pavlova - Comfort Food, Nostalgia Trip and plain Delicious Dessert

You can't mention Australian food without paying homage to the Pavlova. Leave the lamingtons, forget the ANZAC biscuits, the great Australian sweet is a Pavlova.

Not surprisingly the Pavlova raises more passion than old fashioned greed, this Australian contribution to International Cuisine is a source of envy for the New Zealanders. Frequently one of them will lay false claim to the Pav. It's just not true! The Pavlova is Australian!

Bush Tucker - More than Witchetty Grubs

Bush Tucker isn't just witchetty grubs, although Wijuti are incredibly high in protein and free for the eating, but all of our unique native foods.

How about smoked kangaroo steak rolled in kurrajong flour, seasoned with wild lime and lemon myrtle, lightly tossed in macadamia nut oil and served with bush tomatoes, native cranberries and warrigal greens. Followed by wattle seed ice cream, lilly pilly berries in native honey and stewed quandongs.

Bush tucker is becoming widespread, thanks to a spate of recent health studies showing that native Australian meats, especially emu and kangaroo, are lower in fat and higher in iron than other conventional meats. The fruits are also known to be healthier, with the Kakadu plum thought to be the world's highest source of Vitamin C.

Most of what European settlers believed to be inedible is now considered very much the norm on the menus of top restaurants around the country.


Throw some Prawns on the Barbie - BBQ brings out the best in shrimp

500 grams shelled green prawns (roughly 1 lb)

1 Tablespoon soya sauce

1 Tablespoon sherry

1 Teaspoon sesame oil

1 clove garlic minced finely

About 1 inch long stem of green ginger minced finely

Place the prawns in a single layer in a flat bowl.

Mix the rest of the ingredients together and pour over the prawns, stirring to ensure all prawns are coated.

Cover and refrigerate for an hour, turning the prawns over a couple of times.

Heat up the Barbie to medium and lightly oil the plate.

Throw the prawns on

Cook for about 2 minutes then turn and cook for another 2 minutes. Do NOT overcook!

Spoon over any remaining marinade while cooking.

Serve and scoff!

Cooking with Crocodile

The simpler, the better

The white meat of the Crocodile is slightly higher in cholesterol than other meats, but is low in fat, high in protein, and a good source of niacin and vitamin B12.

Crocodile is simple to cook, and takes hardly any preparation time. The choicest cut is the tail fillet and the best way to cook it is frozen. The flavour is lost during any thawing process.

Crocodile has a delicate flavour so strong marinades aren't recommended, and don't use a large number of other ingredients which will mask the taste.

Believe me, with crocodile, the simpler the better.

Bush Tucker

Swinging the Billy
Swinging the Billy

Aboriginal Tucker from stingray to sweet sugar lerp. Anthropologist, Kingsley Palmer, describes the culinary delights of the Pilbara region to the Great Victoria Desert


Cook Time

Prep Time: 5 mins

Total Time: overnight + 1hour

Serves: 1


  • 1 lamb shank
  • sprig rosemary
  • garlic clove bruised
  • 1/2 lemon juiced and zested
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon brown sugar


  1. Put shank in a bowlwith all of the ingredients and leave to marinate overnight (12 hours).
  2. When ready to cook place the shank and the marinade liquids into a baking dish and cook for about an hour. Turn over halfway through the cooking time.
  3. Let it stand 5 to 10 minutes before serving.
Cast your vote for Recipe :Tasty Lamb Shank


What could be more refreshing, colourful and instantly appealing than an Australian mango salad?

A perfect and traditional accompaniment to the Australian Christmas lunch table.

Also gorgeous with a sliced banana added to the mango

Prep time: 10 min
Ready in: 10 min
Yields: 4

Recipe : Mango Salad

  • 2 large ripe mangoes
  • 1 large cucumber
  • 1 large avacado
  • 3 teaspoons lime juice
  • 1 to 2 level teaspoons freshly grated green ginger (or more if you fancy ginger)


  1. Slice cheeks from mangoes, skin and slice flesh into strips.
  2. Skin and remove seeds from cucumber (or be daring and leave the seeds in), slice and mix with mango.
  3. Skin and chop the avacado
  4. Shake the rest of the ingredients together, pour over the salad and serve.

All comments are appreciated. You don't have to be a Squidoo member to leave yours

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    • Wednesday-Elf profile image


      6 years ago from Savannah, Georgia

      Yum. Appreciate all the delightful lamb recipes featured here.

    • SusannaDuffy profile imageAUTHOR

      Susanna Duffy 

      7 years ago from Melbourne Australia

      @anonymous: My part of inner urban Melbourne was indeed an English enclave

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Your opening statement flawed me! . Fortunately Not all of us had such a limited palate. Many of us grew up with variety perhaps you were just living in an English enclave. I remember things such as Kassler and sauerkraut, pork belly and rabbit. Roast Duck on Sundays yum. Then there was all of the wine and the orchards full of fruit, apples, apricots, nectarines plums, quandongs, lillypilly jam and 30 different varieties of grapes. I see now how blessed I was to grow up in South Australia and benefit from the German, Italian and Slovian peoples. My family lived on this type of food from the time they got of the first ships that help colonise the state.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Yum - prawns, mango, pavlova - I'm sooo glad I live right here in downunder!

    • rorymullen lm profile image

      rorymullen lm 

      7 years ago

      I am from Maine and have not currently tried any Australian cooking. On my to-do-list

    • TonyPayne profile image

      Tony Payne 

      7 years ago from Southampton, UK

      Just came back for another look, great Australian recipes, left a G+1.

    • Diana Wenzel profile image

      Renaissance Woman 

      7 years ago from Colorado

      Quite delicious... this lens. My food seems exceedingly boring in comparison. How I would love a true dinner down under feast. **Blessed**

    • Virginia Allain profile image

      Virginia Allain 

      7 years ago from Central Florida

      You forgot barramundi. I actually had a kangaroo steak in Alice Springs. With enough seasoning and some mushrooms, it tasted fine.

      Blessed by a squid angel and featured on You've Been Blessed.

    • PaulaMorgan profile image

      Paula Morgan 

      7 years ago from Sydney Australia

      I have tried crocodile and enjoyed it but I can't imagine you could convince me to try witchety grubs! Love the bush-tucker image.

    • TonyPayne profile image

      Tony Payne 

      7 years ago from Southampton, UK

      Yumm Yumm Yumm Yumm :) I love Greek and Middle Eastern Food, as well as Asian food. Great lens, I haven't had breakfast yet, but you made me want to move straight on to a nice Lamb Shank, Greek style...

    • oztoo lm profile image

      oztoo lm 

      9 years ago

      I've never had crocodile or kangaroo meat but I love our Aussie lamb. Of course all the fabulous fruits and many of the bush tucker foods are quite delicious. Love this lens 5*****

    • JanTUB profile image

      Jan T Urquhart Baillie 

      9 years ago from Australia

      Not a purple star, but five little brown ones. And a fave, too. Can I have some Pavlova, please?

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Oh yummy! You know I just love reading food lenses. I love sharing the recipes on Facebook with my friends. That mango salad looks delicious and it's so easy to make. 5 stars!!

    • profile image


      10 years ago

      Wow what about Tim Tam!

      ? I absolutely love them yummmy!

    • piedromolinero profile image


      10 years ago

      Once I had the chance to try crocodile in an australian restaurant in Hamburg. Unfortunately it seems I was one out of a few who liked it, cause as I came there another time the restaurant was closed. Whenever I will get another chance I will take it again.

      5* for such a delicious lens, will see for which recipes I can find the ingredients here.

    • daoine lm profile image

      daoine lm 

      10 years ago

      I really enjoy crocodile, but kangaroo is too gamey for me (and I also don't have the heart to eat something so cute).

    • SusannaDuffy profile imageAUTHOR

      Susanna Duffy 

      10 years ago from Melbourne Australia

      Crocodile is really, really nice meat. Think crayfish (lobster)you could easily confuse the two. Don't you eat alligator?

    • TreasuresBrenda profile image

      Treasures By Brenda 

      10 years ago from Canada

      Pavlova is definitely what I think of when I think of Australian food! I would never have imagined that you eat crocodile but I do not see why not. However, we are definitely not going to see it in North America!

      Interesting lens, I will have to try your mango 'salad.'


    • profile image


      10 years ago

      Thanks for joining G Rated Lense Factory!

    • KiwiGayle profile image


      10 years ago

      Nice lens. Now I'm hungry for shrimp. I've linked to my Aussies in America page altho I think bush tucker might be hard to find here.

    • KimGiancaterino profile image


      10 years ago

      I've never been tempted to try crocodile or kangaroo, but the dessert in your intro photo looks very yummy. Welcome to Culinary Favorites From A to Z.

    • TonyPayne profile image

      Tony Payne 

      10 years ago from Southampton, UK

      Nice lens. 5***** Same as England really, I grew up thinking that even Pizza and Spaghetti Bolognese were foreign food. Now the most popular food in England is Indian...

    • Stazjia profile image

      Carol Fisher 

      10 years ago from Warminster, Wiltshire, UK

      We don't get a lot of crocodile meat in England but we do have a lot of barbecues - when it's not raining.


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