Thursday, 6 March 2014

Holiday food: Australia

The one thing I remember from the Australian restaurant menus is 'salt and pepper squid' and 'schnitzels'. We learnt that the Italians and the Greeks were the first to bring restaurant dining in Australia (correct me if I'm wrong) and you can see both cuisines everywhere. Of course, there were the usual burger joints that you get worldwide but there's no need for them when there's some great local places nearby.

I also loved the fact that there were salad bars as fast food outlets. I picked up on the fact that their lifestyle is definitely more healthier than ours. We saw hundreds of people running by the beach, there were people exercising everywhere and to be externally beautiful was top of the list in a lot of people's eyes. In comparison, in the UK there are hardly any healthy, fast food restaurants. I think this is a huge gap in the UK market. Burger chains have only just started selling salads on their 'menus' but they are a pathetic attempt and the burger still reigns as champion. We need fast, healthy food that packs a punch. We need it soon and I can feel it coming.

Going back to the food of kangaroo land, there were also big Asian influences from the surrounding Asian countries. We loved the noodle bars and there were plenty of sushi places like those cropping up in the West.

To the left is when we had some awesome (and very cheap) instant noodles on the table full of doodles from travellers at the Sydney Harbour hostel. It was the most amazing hostel I've been to...big recommendations to fellow travellers out there!

To the right, we stopped at a local noodle bar just off the beach at Bondi Beach and had laksa soup and chicken and mushroom coconut milk curry. It was beautiful. We went back to our Bondi beach hostel and collapsed in the heat. That was the night before Valentines Day.

The next morning, on Valentines, we woke and went down to the Lamrock cafe for pancakes, eggs and iced coffees. Perfect.

 I couldn't forget to mention that they love their local produce, especially in the smaller cities such as Perth. When we were there, we stayed with family relatives in Baldivis, and had local honey for breakfast and we also ate vegemite for the first time on toast. We were amazed that the honey not only said what honey it was but also what tree it came from. Amazing. All we get here is 'Oxfordshire honey'.

When the rain came, we had movie days and we had a lush day in Cronulla with snacks including Tim Tams, lollies, jaffas, popcorn,  and cheezels. Yum. The photo right is making homemade schnitzels in Wollongong.

 Of course, there was fresh fruit everywhere for most breakfasts. Loved this.
Then, of course, there were the BBQ's. Snaggers or snags (sausages to us Brits) and beef steak were mainly cooked on the barbie. Also, in Bowral on the farm, there were beef joints cooked and served with salad and baked potatoes in cheese and cream and onions (similar to my dauphinoise potatoes). They cooked as much as they could on the BBQ, it was the central family social party starter. It was the hub to the outside parties, it was the focal point of the evening (apart from the delicious beer, obviously!).

One last thing is not only did they love their food but they loved their drink. Ted (Tooheys Extra Dry) was popular as well as Corona (like it is here). Wine was obviously amazing and great value. I spotted some pale ale in bars but not the dark ale or stout that you get here (my Dad defo wouldn't be able to drink there!) as well as cider being introduced over there due to the influence of the Brits.

All I can say is that it was a yummy holiday!

ZP x

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