For years, indigenous Australians have been living off the land, so we thought we’d help you bring some of the authentic flavours of the Australian outback into your kitchen.
Coral trout cooked in paperbark with lemon myrtle
Cooking with paperbark gives the fish a lovely smoky flavour. You can head off on an outback adventure and try hunting for the native ingredients yourself, or alternatively, if you’re a lazy girl like, me you’ll just want to log on to a website like Outback Chef and select ingredients to add to your shopping cart.
Serves 2-3, depending on the size of the fish
- 1 coral trout or whatever fish is available
- 2 cups of assorted diced fresh vegetables — they can be anything you like
- 1 heaped dessert spoon of lemon myrtle or aniseed myrtle
- Generous sprinkle of black pepper
- Paperbark peeled off the paperbark tree
- With a sharp knife, slit the fish up the middle.
- Stuff the fish with whatever vegetables you have available.
- Add a good sprinkle of black pepper, lemon myrtle or aniseed myrtle.
- Peel a good wad of paperbark off a paperbark tree. Or if you can’t find paperbark, try banana leaves or good old fashioned al-foil available from any supermarket.
- Wash the bark or banana leaves and leave it soak it for 5 minutes before using it to wrap the fish. This will prevent it from catching fire.
- Cook over a camp fire or fire up the barbecue. It normally takes around 40 minutes, less if the fish is smaller.
What you should know before eating fish >>
- 100 grams of unsalted butter
- 1 cup of raw sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 cup wholemeal flour
- 1/2 cup white flour
- 1 teaspoon of bicarb soda
- 3 ripe bananas, mashed
- 1/2 cup of fresh riberries
- 1/2 teaspoon of salt
- 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla essence
- Using a fork or an electric beater, cream the butter and sugar.
- Add the mashed bananas and eggs and mix until light and fluffy.
- Fold in the riberries being careful not to over mix
- Using a separate bowl, stir in the sifted flour, soda and salt.
- Add the banana mixture and add the vanilla.
- Pour the mixture into a greased pan.
- Bake at 175 degrees C for about 60 minutes.
- Oven temperatures can vary, prick with a skewer, when it comes out clean, it’s cooked.
- Store in the fridge.
- Nicely complemented by wattleseed espresso butter.
Wattleseed espresso butter
Serve with the banana riberry bread. You can store the butter in the fridge for up to four weeks.
- 2 teaspoons of dried and roasted wattleseed
- 1/4 cup of boiling water
- 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup of butter at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons of raw sugar (add more if you want it sweeter)
- 1/2 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
- Place wattleseed in a cup and pour over the 1/4 cup of boiling water.
- Add raw sugar and cinnamon.
- Leave it for about 30 minutes to allow the wattleseed flavour to penetrate the water.
- Pour the wattleseed and water mix through a sieve to make sure there are no grains.
- Using a stick mixer, cream the butter until soft and fluffy
- Add the wattleseed flavoured water. It may be runny but keep mixing until it thickens up..
- will keep in the fridge for up to a month.
Why you should explore the Northern Territory >>
Enjoy with a hot bush curry or with soup.
- 3 cups of self-raising flour
- 1-1/2 teaspoons of salt
- 60 grams of unsalted butter
- 30 grams of ground, roasted wattleseed
- 1 cup of almond milk
- In a large mixing bowl, sift the self raising flour and rub in the butter until it resembles fine breadcrumbs.
- In a dry saucepan, heat the wattleseed. This allows the flavour to be released, but be careful not to burn it, otherwise it will ruin the taste of the damper.
- Add salt and wattleseed to the breadcrumb mix.
- Make a well in the centre and gradually in the almond milk, stirring until it becomes a scone-like consistency.
- Knead for a few minutes and shape into a large ball, like a cob loaf..
- Using a sharp knife, make a criss-cross indent and then use a little milk to glaze.
- Preheat oven to 200 degrees C and bake until 30 minutes or until golden brown.
Lemon myrtle ice cream
- 1 cup of soy milk
- 1-1/3 cups of thickened cream
- 1/3 cup of coconut cream
- 6-1/2 tablespoons of sugar
- A pinch of salt
- 1 teaspoon of ground lemon myrtle
- In a saucepan, add all the ingredients and on a medium heat, combine while constantly stirring being careful not to burn it.
- Chill in the fridge, then churn the mixture in an ice cream maker and then freeze it.
- If you don’t have an ice cream maker, take out the mixture and beat it with a hand beater a couple of times during the freezing process.
Some of the specialised ingredients in these recipes can be hard to find in the aisles of your supermarket, however Outback Chef is a good place to find them without having to go paddock bashing in the outback.