Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Australian Food

Being the foodie that I am, I was looking forward to trying all the native Australian cuisine when I signed up to study abroad. I was frequently asked before my departure "what kind of food do Australians eat" and "what food is Australia known for," and at the time I honestly had no idea.

I knew of the more publicized items like Vegemite and Tim Tams, but other than that I wasn't sure what I would be eating over the course of the semester. I've found that meals in Australia are very similar to that of the United States. They do however seem to have a larger variety of foods everywhere you go, including a lot of Indian and Thai food.

Vegemite is a spread that is commonly put on toast that has been buttered. It often gets a bad rep due to people eating it incorrectly or its extremely salty usual flavor, but I actually really enjoy Vegemite toast and will definitely make it when I get home (I already have a new jar packed in my suitcase).

Tim Tams are biscuits with a chocolate cream filling and chocolate coating. They come in a variety of flavors like caramel, dark chocolate, white chocolate, mint, and more. While these are the more commonly known biscuits, I have tried many others including Mint Slices that are just as good. This may have made it harder to fit into my pants at the end of the day, but it's been worth it!

My all time favorite Aussie dish has been meat pies. I was so skeptical when I first saw them and was explained what they were, but turns out they are delicious. Meat pies are comparable to a shepherds pie in the US. I have had a few different kinds now including an original beef pie, a chicken curry pie, and a potato pie. They are often topped with tomato sauce, like the picture below. However, some places offer mashed potatoes and/or mashed peas on top with gravy...YUM.

The all time strangest thing I've tried in Australia has been fairy bread. It is literally just white bread topped with butter and rainbow sprinkles??? It was being served the first week I was here, during our orientation week, and everyone seemed to be really excited but I was just confused what I was eating. Lol.

Below are pictures of some more Aussie foods I have tried while being here. Weet-Bix is grainy cereal that comes in the form of large biscuits. A sausage sandwich or "sausage sanga" is a grilled sausage on a piece of bread (yeah no bun, just bread... I'll never understand) with sauce and sometimes grilled onions. These are VERY common barbecue items served on campus here. This is something I will not particularly miss as I had my fair share during orientation week. Lamington's are a vanilla sponge cake coated in chocolate sauce and coconut shavings. I tried the one in the picture below at the library on campus, and I would definitely recommend. Last, but not least, a kangaroo burger. I had this burger while on an excursion in the Blue Mountains and it was mighty good! I thought it tasted very similar to beef, but it was slightly sweeter. However, recently an American friend and I tried to make kangaroo burgers ourselves, and they didn't turn out to be so good. So my advice, stick to the restaurants if you want to try some roo.

Sausage sanga from our sausage sizzle during O week.

As you can see, I've had my fair share of food while living in Australia for the past 4 months. I will definitely miss the meat pies, Arnott's biscuits, and Cadbury chocolate bars but I am also looking forward to not having to squeeze into my pants due to my lack of portion control. 😄

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