Having just celebrated Australia Day my mind is full of how fortunate Australians truly are.
I don’t think there is one food item that we can’t grow or raise on our fertile land. Yes, we have our ups and downs, fires, storms, droughts and floods, but overall, we can always easily put our hands on fresh and tasty produce that is of world class quality.
Australians have learnt to appreciate this country’s culture, heritage and plentiful food supply. We are now, more than ever, a nation proud to call this country home and even more proud to show ourselves off to the world.
There are plentiful supplies of meat, grains, fruits and vegetables, dairy produce and seafood available throughout the year, and furthermore, there is an excellent wine industry, which produces world-class quality wines and liqueurs.
Many of the dishes we eat in Australia have been brought to our shores by our foreign ancestors, but time, and our unique lifestyle, has seen these foods stylised into Australian cuisine.
A new book, ‘Australian Heritage Cookbook’, has just been released by New Holland Publishers and caters for every occasion: from spontaneous entertaining and family cooking to extravagant dinner parties but above all, it celebrates our Australian food heritage.
The book pulls together recipes which have been adapted from those of our forbearers and include, once foreign, but now readily available, ingredients such as Guinness, yellow curry paste, Chinese five spice powder, black sesame seeds and lobster tails. I realise that there will be many readers who will wonder what I am talking about as these are every day ingredients, but I remember the time that they were simply not available in Australia, well, not readily.
The recipes in Australian Heritage Cookbook are easy to follow with detailed steps and beautiful illustrations that will have your mouth watering.
You will read where to find the best rock lobster, crayfish, oysters and mud crabs, and then learn how to cook them with beautiful tropical fruits. There is also the ‘simple’ but still informative information given about the difference between lettuces, their uses, refrigerator life and storage details.
Of course there is a chapter on country cooking with recipes for jams, relishes and chutneys. And the foreword for this particular part of the book talks of the pride felt by Australians who have made their own produce.
With recipes from flavoured butters, soups, poultry, meat, fish and vegetables to sweets and preserves, this book is quite possibly the only cook book you will ever need.
Australian Heritage Cookbook
New Holland Publishers RRP $39.99 available from all good book retailers or online www.newhollandpublishers.com