Australian Recipes and Cuisine
Australia has many historical links with the United Kingdom, including, not least, the fact the first European settlers in the country were from the United Kingdom, and that the country was a British colony and later a Dominion within the British Empire. As you may expect given this history, many Australian dishes have been inspired by traditional British cooking, and meals based around pies, and roasted or grill meat, remain popular to this day.
Since World War II, Australia has also seen increased immigration with Mediterranean countries and Southeast Asia, and this has greatly enriched the variety of Austrlian cuisine. New recipes, unique to Australia have also been developed, sometimes based on unique Australian plants, and also inspired by “bush tucker” (foraged food, often inspired by traditional aboriginal recipes).
Some exclusively Australian foods include:
– Pie floater – A British style meat pie. However, the pie is covered with tomato sauce, turned upside down and served in a thick green pea soup.
– Damper – A traditional recipe for travelers in the outback, damper is a wheat-based soda bread that can easily be prepared at the roadside.
– Chiko roll – A spicy Australian version of Chinese spring rolls. Chiko rolls contain mutton, cabbage, carrot, celery and sometimes barley, and are deep-fried.
– Vegemite – A paste made from yeast extract. Vegemite is ateen as a spread on toast or sandwiches.
Australia also has its own unique desserts (although New Zealand would also claim to be the originator of some of these).
– Pavlova (also claimed by New Zealand) – A meringue with a crispy exterior, but light and fluffy on the inside.
– ANZAC biscuit (also claimed by New Zealand) – Biscuits made from roled oats, coconut and syrup. According to legend, they were first prepared for the ANZAC troops sent to fight in the Gallipoli campaign in World War I, the recipe being specifically designed so as to produce a biscuit that would preserve well.
– Lamingtons – Cubes of sponge cake, covered with chocolate icing and desiccated coconut. The cubes may be sliced in half, and a layer of cream or strawberry jam spread between the halves.