Australia has some amazing food to offer to the world; from fresh fish to decadent deserts, their cuisine is a mixture of all things delicious. But everyday food isn’t where it ends: when the festive season rolls around the corner, they bring out the best they have. So let’s take a look at Australia’s most delicious festive meals from all year round, and how best to prepare them:
A warm Christmas
If you come from a country in the Northern hemisphere, a Christmas without snow, warm cocoa, a roast and other cozy, warm food might seem completely unimaginable. But, since Australia is quite warm around Christmas time, their family dinner looks quite different. It is usually light, cold meats, like chicken and ham, and plenty of fresh seafood. If you want to make the dinner table really stand out, you can construct an ice platter. Find a large platter (or use multiple smaller ones) and fill it with large pieces of ice. It is a good idea to leave the platter itself in the freezer for a few hours to slow the melting of the ice. Then take cuts of the absolute freshest fish, prawns and other sea life and arrange them on the platter. If you aren’t sure how to prepare it so you are positive it’s safe to eat, you can order it from a local restaurant. Garnish with lemon wedges and herbs.
For Aussies, a traditional Easter can simply not pass without a royal lamb roast. Since this is the colder season in Australia, it is a wonderful way to stay in a have a cozy day with your family and loved ones. A traditional way to do it is to marinate and roast the lamb in an oven, along with all the sides. But if you want to put a twist on it, you can make a wonderful barbecued lamb shoulder with a dry rub of spices. For the sides, you want there to be plenty of options, but preparing so many different dishes isn’t easy. Try to multitask by using a saucepan with a steamer from Anolon or some other high-quality non-stick cookware. That way, you can steam your vegetables while reducing the sauce in the pan. That way, you can steam your vegetables while reducing the sauce in the pan at the same time. This will not only help you get everything done faster, but it will also give the vegetables an interesting flavor. With the lamb, you can serve a wonderful wine reduction, or go with the barbecue theme all the way and make some barbecue sauce.
You definitely can’t talk about traditional Australian food without mentioning this iconic treat. Anzac day is a holiday which celebrated the Australian and New Zealand heroes during the First and Second World War. And for this occasion, Anzac cookies are baked in every bakery and many homes across Australia. They are a chewy cookie made with golden syrup and coconut, baked until golden brown and crispy on the outside. If you want to make them healthier, use all organic ingredients, including rolled oats and spelt flour. If you want to add some more flavor to complement the coconut, go for finely chopped macadamia nuts and dried cranberries which go perfectly with this. These cookies used to be sent to soldiers overseas by their wives to remind them of the flavors of home, and today they are a national favorite.
According to sleepingculture.com, there are plenty of sweet things that are made around Christmas time in Australia, but one thing that always stands out – both with appearance and flavor – is the pavlova. The perfect blend of crispy, creamy and fresh, if you haven’t tried pavlova before, you definitely need to get on that soon. A traditional pavlova is made with three large baked meringue discs, filled and layered with whipped cream and fresh fruit, especially berries. But, if you want to make it even more decadent and change the traditional flavors, you can try making a chocolate pavlova. Firstly, when making the meringue, you want to fold in some high quality cocoa powder without overmixing it, to end up with wonderful streaks throughout the discs. And if you want to take it even further, you can replace the whipped cream with whipped chocolate ganache. If going for this chocolate option, use fresh berries and bananas, and garnish with a couple of sprigs of mint.
So whether you’re someone who’s just moved to Australia and want to immerse yourself in the culture, or if you want to bring a piece of Australia into your home anywhere in the world, now you know which dishes to bake for special occasions. Of course, each one of these can be modified to be enjoyed by everyone in your family, or simply to make it your own. Stay true to Australian cuisine by using fresh ingredients, especially when they are in season to get the maximum flavor.
About the author
Zara Lewis is a regular contributor at highstylife.com and a full time animal lover. Passionate about creating a better world for the generations to come, she is a mum of two, raising them inseparably from their furry family members.