Australian Cuisine

The only Aussie foods I’ve ever eaten are Tim Tams and Vegemite.

A Tim Tam is a cookie. Actually it’s two layers of chocolate malted cookie, separated by a light cream filling, and coated in chocolate. Yes, it’s heavenly.

Vegemite is a strange, dark food paste made from yeast extract that’s used as a spread for toast, sandwiches, and so forth. I’m convinced that a tub of Vegemite can survive a nuclear meltdown and that it will be the food of the zombie apocalypse. President Obama stated, “It’s horrible.” It definitely takes some getting used to.

Aboriginals have occupied Australia for at least 40,000 years and developed a diet based on the land’s native plants and wildlife. Later, culinary tastes were strongly influenced by British and Irish colonialists. Contemporary cuisine includes these plus the influence of multicultural immigration, most of which has come from Asia and the Mediterranean.

There are some foods I’m looking forward to having. More Tim Tams for starters. Also, fish and chips, which I haven’t had since I went to London in 2006; meat pie, ground beef enclosed in a baked pastry shell; lots of barbecue; lots of red wine; and I’d like to try kangaroo meat. And, of course, you can’t really go wrong with great pizza, Chinese, and kebab. Although Theo drinks instant coffee for some godforsaken reason, I’ve heard Australia has a sophisticated coffee culture and I look forward to many an afternoon having a latte in a cafe.

I don’t think I can talk about Australian food without mentioning beet, which Aussies call beetroot (curious for a country that shortens everything). Apparently, Australians consume a lot of beetroot – canned slices, as a dip, as a salad topping, roasted, with risotto, on (gasp!) burgers. Yes, burgers. Even McDonald’s puts beetroot on its “McOz” burger.

I really don’t know what to make of this beetroot thing or their burgers with “the lot”, which also includes pineapple and a fried egg.

About the image: Vegemite Love by Theo K (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0)




  1. I’ve just got back to Australia after 2 years away; Tim Tams and Vegemite were top of the list on the first day back 🙂

    • Hmmm. Now you have me thinking I should make a special arrival food request. Tim Tams please!

      Craig, thanks for being such an awesome reader and for your comments.

  2. you forgot to mention the shredded carrots on their burger. What? Beetroot and carrots? Not a fan.

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