At first glance, the food in Australia looks very familiar to European or American cuisine. But at the closer look (or better, taste) the Australian food has its own unique flavors.
Australians love meat pies. It is everyone’s favorite snack. There is a variety of them with chunky, diced or minced beef with gravy. Some people prefer chicken filling. Australian meat pies have flaky golden pastry on top.
No doubt that this comfort food came with the convicts from England. However, the Australians insist that these meat pies are their own, Australian, creation.
We didn’t dare to try vegemite – the thick, black spread, which usually comes in a 200 grams jar. But my friend, who lived in Australia for 20 years swears by it.
He still orders this stuff on Amazon for himself, his wife and especially for his twin daughters who were born and raised in Australia. Like many other Australians, they eat vegemite for breakfast.
Vegemite is made with brewer’s yeast, some vegetables, and spices. It is considered to be very healthy stuff, though it is incredibly salty and should be spread on with a light hand.
To us, a kangaroo is a cute animal, carrying its adorable joey in a pouch, and jumping at the incredible speed. To the Australians, though, this healthy lean meat is another excellent source of protein. It has a pleasant gamey taste.
We were hesitant to try the kangaroo steaks, thinking of all the nature programs we watched on National Geographic. Finally, deciding “now or never” we gave it a try and became fans of this wonderful meat. Actually, in “down under,” the kangaroo meat is used in many dishes. For example, they prepare Armenian dolma with ground kangaroo meat, rice, onion, basil, cilantro, all wrapped in either grape or cabbage leaves. Delicious! Another great dish, rice pilaf, can be made with a kangaroo instead of lamb.
Fish and chips
Fish and chips is another dish that reminds us of England. Australians eat a lot of it. The fish and chips we ate in Sydney were just as good as fish and chips we had in Dover, England a few years ago.
Roasted leg of lamb
Prepared with olive oil, rosemary, and garlic, roasted leg of lamb makes a wonderful dinner.
Pea and ham soup
Pea and ham soup. Very likely, this filling and comforting dish also came to Australia with the British convicts and became a staple there. We loved it.
The Aussies love their “Barbie” (the BBQ.) They like burgers, but their favorite dish is a barbequed sausage placed inside the bun with the tomato sauce on top.
Pavlova is the favorite dessert in Australia. The combination of crispy meringue, creamy layer between the meringue rounds, whipped cream on top with a colorful decoration of fruit make it a winner. It was invented in honor of Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova who performed in Australia and New Zealand in the 1920s.
The dessert lamington is made with sponge cake and served in small rectangular pieces covered with chocolate and sprinkled with grated coconut. Convenient to hold in your hand while eating.
Macadamia nuts are native to Australia. Our absolutely favorite nuts. Unfortunately, they are the most expensive nuts in the world.
Book your flight to Australia
Australia is the planet’s sixth largest country. Its land area is almost the same as the US (if you exclude Alaska and Hawaii). Australia has eight climate zones.
Best time to visit northern Australia – between April and August.
Best time to travel to the southern states – December, January, and February.