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* UsefulNotes/AustralianCuisine



[[AC:Australia on a plate]]
To call Australian cuisine "eclectic" is an understatement. Itself a hodgepodge of immigrant cultures that doesn't market itself as a coherent whole to the outside world the way that, say, the United States of America do, there's no one style or ingredient that outsiders can point to and say "that's Aussie food". Instead, Australian cuisine is more notable for specific foods that have evolved there. At its core, Australian cuisine is British cuisine, adapted to the semi-tropical general climate, and reinforced by a pronounced incorporation of Italian and Chinese cuisine. Its general dietary focus is on meat, seafood and desserts, and the country considers itself to be struggling with an obesity crisis. Some of the local curiosities that visitors can look forward to seeing should they dine in Australia include:
* Barbecue: ''Not'' to be confused with the slow-cooked, sauce and/or smoke-infused barbecue of the Americas! Australian barbecue (or barbie, or BBQ, as they abbreviate it) is closer to what Americans call "grilling"; meat, seafood and vegetables grilled on open-air griddles. Barbecuing is ''the'' most iconic Australian social gathering, and most people who get together for parties or other casual socializing events, especially in rural environments, will eat barbecue as they do so. Australian parks often have public grilling surfaces where families can fry up their meat, it's that important to them.
* Pies: Australians are ''nuts'' for pies, alongside their cousins the pastie and the sausage roll. Sweet pies are relatively rare here, with the focus being on savory pastries; the "meat pie", a roughly palm-sized short pie full of minced or shredded beef with gravy, is the iconic snack, usually served with tomato sauce ("ketchup" for Americans, but the Australian version is less sweet and more runny). Pies are SeriousBusiness to Aussies, and every town will have a bakery or a cafe making its own pies. One bakery in the state of Queensland earned fame for a menu of over '''120 different varieties of pie''', ranging from variants on the classic beef, pork and chicken to more exotic affairs like turkey, duck, kangaroo and crocodile.
* Lamington: One of the national desserts, Lamingtons are small sponge cakes, or cut pieces thereof, covered in icing (traditionally chocolate, but variants do exist) and rolled in shredded dried coconut meat. The more decadent versions are served with cream and jam.
* Pavlova: Another iconic Aussie dessert, commonly eaten around Christmas time, pavlovas are hollowed meringue containers filled with whipped cream and mixed pieces of fruit.
* Peach Melba: A famous Aussie dessert that actually isn't served much, this dish of peaches and vanilla icecream served with raspberry sauce is tied in some way to the famous Opera singer Dame Nellie Melba, although how it cme to be is something stories disagree on.
* Prawns: '''Not''' shrimp, and misidentifying the two is a national BerserkButton. Shrimp refers to small crustaceans used as bait when fishing. Prawns are their larger cousins, which thrive in waters of the Australian coast. They are eaten with relish, especially around Christmas time. And yes, they can be fried on a barbecue.
* Mangos: Not indigenous to Australia, but traditionally gorged upon during the Christmas months, when they come into season.
* Vegemite: A descendant of a British spread called Marmite, Vegemite is based on a yeast extract, just like its ancestor, and is a love it or hate it Aussie cuisine icon, marketed as a cheap but nutritious Vitamin B-rich spread suitable for children's lunch boxes, leading to an incredibly catchy jingle called "Vegemite Kids" by the locals. It is eaten on buttered bread, spread thickly with butter and sparingly with the vegemite - it has an ''extremely'' strong, salty, almost acrid taste, and can be quite overpowering for the inexperienced. A sweeter, milder, but less famous version called ''Promite'' also exists, and you can even find the original Marmite if you look hard enough.
* Weet-Bix: A local breakfast staple, finger-length vaguely brick-shaped bars of compressed shredded wheat, eaten with milk for breakfast. Locals have long had a tradition of spicing up the nutritious, if somewhat bland, meal by adding extras like sugar, syrup, honey or slices of fruit (most commonly banana).
* Milo: A local powdered drink made from a mixture of malt powder and powdered chocolate. It is stirred into heated milk or water and consumed -- local wisdom is to always use milk instead of water and to put in large, generous spoons of the powder for a stronger, superior flavor. It possesses low sugar and a high content of multiple vitamins and minerals -- Calcium, Iron, and Vitamins A, B1, B2 and C. As such, it's considered a "healthy snack", and often consumed by individuals with athletic tastes.
* Native Food: The Australian equivalent of game meats, such as kangaroo, emu or goanna (a kind of large lizard), mixed with indigenous fruits, nuts, and plants. Also colloquially known as "Bush Tucker", but that's arguably politically incorrect these days. Most Australians don't eat this stuff, as it is the local equivalent of "hippie food", but there is a subtle push from the government trying to rebrand it and market it to the mainstream consumer, and kangaroo meat in particular is starting to show up in Australian restaurants.
** Witchety Grub: Invertebrates of several kinds are part of the Bush Tucker "menu", but the most famous and recognizable are the Witchety Grubs, a species of large, wood-boring moth larvae.
* Sausages: Australia may not be as crazy about them as Germany, but sausages are very common food here, favored for their cheapness and how well they go with the Australian love of grilling meat. Many different varieties exist, mostly distinguished by their basic meat ingredients; beef and pork are the mainstay, followed by chicken, lamb and kangaroo. More exotic versions, such as beef with native chili, most certainly do exist. The iconic no-frills BBQ meal is a grilled sausage with sauce and maybe fried onions wrapped up in a slice of bread.
* The Works Burger: An iconic Aussie spin on the classic American hamburger, this motley creation consists of a fried patty made from minced beef, as well as lettuce, cheese, tomato, onions (usually fried), beetroot, a slice of pineapple, bacon, and a fried egg, all served in a buttered burger bun.
* ANZAC Biscuits: Created by Australian and New Zealand women to send to the soldiers as they fought UsefulNotes/WorldWarII, these long-lasting biscuits are made with rolled oats, coconut and golden syrup as their primary ingredients.
* Arnott's Biscuits: Arnott's is the countries single largest producer of biscuits and crackers, with a spectacularly large array of different items on the menu; you'll see their products in every grocery store and service station across the country. The most iconic are the Shapes (small, flavorful baked crackers), Jatz (large, round, baked crackers), Tim-Tams (two wafers sandwiching a cream filling, covered in chocolate; there are many different flavors, from milk, dark and white chocolate to more exotic affairs) and Mint Slices (chocolate biscuit topped with mint cream, covered in milk chocolate).
* Macadamia Nuts: Native to Eastern Australia, these nearly golf-ball sized nuts are delicious, but infamously hard to get into; hammers are the go-to method of choice.
* Fairy Bread: Seen as a child's treat served at parties, and becoming obscure, this is just soft white bread buttered and spread with hundreds-and-thousands, a small, round, sugary candy. Arnott's (see above) has a biscuit type called by the same name, which is a shortbread biscuit with hundreds-and-thousands glued to it with strawberry icing.
* Damper: A wheat-flour based soda-bread, traditionally cooked on campfires. It's more of a historical food than anything, although workers on remote livestock stations still make it.
* Chicken Parmigiana: A clear marker of the Italian influence on Australian cuisine, this is one of the most widespread "everyday restaurant" foods you'll see; virtually any public eatery that has a menu will serve this dish, which consists of a crumbed chicken fillet smothered in tomato sauce and melted cheese, served with salad, vegetables or thick-cut potato chips ("steak fries" to Americans).
* Cherry Ripe: An iconic Australian candy bar, consisting of dried raspberries and coconut formed into a bar shape and then covered in milk chocolate.
* Slices: These sweet pastries, inherited from Britain, are everywhere to be found in Australia as the sweet treat of choice. The most iconic flavor is the vanilla slice; thick confectioner's custard sandwiched between two sweet crackers, with the top cracker covered in a thick layer of sweet, creamy icing - ironically, most vanilla slices nowadays are topped with passionfruit-flavored cream!
* Ice Cream & Ice Blocks: In a hot, arid country whose denizens have a sweet tooth, frozen sweets are incredibly popular. Aussies typically use the term "ice cream" to refer to frozen milk-based treats that are dished up from a container into a cone or a bowl to be eaten. Ice Blocks are pre-prepared treats consisting of either flavored water ice or ice cream shaped around a stick. Some unusual examples include Splice, which is a fruit juice ice wrapped around a core of vanilla ice cream, and Gaytime, an ice block made of frozen cream covered in chocolate dipped into biscuit pieces.
* Candy: Australians consume a lot of candy, and whilst much of it is British or America in origin, there are some home-grown favorites. Fantales - caramels coated in chocolate and served in individual wrappers, printed with interesting facts, are iconic, as are Minties - large, sticky, gooey, chewy soft mints, whose wrappers are covered in blackly comic little cartoons.
* Coffee: Since the post-WWII influx of European immigrants, Australia in general, and Melbourne in particular, has grown into a nation of coffee snobs -- one of the most common complaints from Australians travelling overseas is not being able to find a decent coffee. We're not picky about the style, either: Vietnamese-style sweet coffee, Italian froth, Turkish sludge, it's all good, so long as it's ''good''.

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* Coffee: Since the post-WWII influx of European immigrants, Australia in general, and Melbourne in particular, has grown into a nation of coffee snobs -- one of the most common complaints from Australians travelling overseas is not being able to find a decent coffee. We're not picky about the style, either: Vietnamese-style sweet coffee, Italian froth, Turkish sludge, it's all good, so long as it's ''good''.

Added DiffLines:


[[AC:Australia on a plate]]
To call Australian cuisine "eclectic" is an understatement. Itself a hodgepodge of immigrant cultures that doesn't market itself as a coherent whole to the outside world the way that, say, the United States of America do, there's no one style or ingredient that outsiders can point to and say "that's Aussie food". Instead, Australian cuisine is more notable for specific foods that have evolved there. At its core, Australian cuisine is British cuisine, adapted to the semi-tropical general climate, and reinforced by a pronounced incorporation of Italian and Chinese cuisine. Its general dietary focus is on meat, seafood and desserts, and the country considers itself to be struggling with an obesity crisis. Some of the local curiosities that visitors can look forward to seeing should they dine in Australia include:
* Barbecue: ''Not'' to be confused with the slow-cooked, sauce and/or smoke-infused barbecue of the Americas! Australian barbecue (or barbie, or BBQ, as they abbreviate it) is closer to what Americans call "grilling"; meat, seafood and vegetables grilled on open-air griddles. Barbecuing is ''the'' most iconic Australian social gathering, and most people who get together for parties or other casual socializing events, especially in rural environments, will eat barbecue as they do so. Australian parks often have public grilling surfaces where families can fry up their meat, it's that important to them.
* Pies: Australians are ''nuts'' for pies, alongside their cousins the pastie and the sausage roll. Sweet pies are relatively rare here, with the focus being on savory pastries; the "meat pie", a roughly palm-sized short pie full of minced or shredded beef with gravy, is the iconic snack, usually served with tomato sauce ("ketchup" for Americans, but the Australian version is less sweet and more runny). Pies are SeriousBusiness to Aussies, and every town will have a bakery or a cafe making its own pies. One bakery in the state of Queensland earned fame for a menu of over '''120 different varieties of pie''', ranging from variants on the classic beef, pork and chicken to more exotic affairs like turkey, duck, kangaroo and crocodile.
* Lamington: One of the national desserts, Lamingtons are small sponge cakes, or cut pieces thereof, covered in icing (traditionally chocolate, but variants do exist) and rolled in shredded dried coconut meat. The more decadent versions are served with cream and jam.
* Pavlova: Another iconic Aussie dessert, commonly eaten around Christmas time, pavlovas are hollowed meringue containers filled with whipped cream and mixed pieces of fruit.
* Peach Melba: A famous Aussie dessert that actually isn't served much, this dish of peaches and vanilla icecream served with raspberry sauce is tied in some way to the famous Opera singer Dame Nellie Melba, although how it cme to be is something stories disagree on.
* Prawns: '''Not''' shrimp, and misidentifying the two is a national BerserkButton. Shrimp refers to small crustaceans used as bait when fishing. Prawns are their larger cousins, which thrive in waters of the Australian coast. They are eaten with relish, especially around Christmas time. And yes, they can be fried on a barbecue.
* Mangos: Not indigenous to Australia, but traditionally gorged upon during the Christmas months, when they come into season.
* Vegemite: A descendant of a British spread called Marmite, Vegemite is based on a yeast extract, just like its ancestor, and is a love it or hate it Aussie cuisine icon, marketed as a cheap but nutritious Vitamin B-rich spread suitable for children's lunch boxes, leading to an incredibly catchy jingle called "Vegemite Kids" by the locals. It is eaten on buttered bread, spread thickly with butter and sparingly with the vegemite - it has an ''extremely'' strong, salty, almost acrid taste, and can be quite overpowering for the inexperienced. A sweeter, milder, but less famous version called ''Promite'' also exists, and you can even find the original Marmite if you look hard enough.
* Weet-Bix: A local breakfast staple, finger-length vaguely brick-shaped bars of compressed shredded wheat, eaten with milk for breakfast. Locals have long had a tradition of spicing up the nutritious, if somewhat bland, meal by adding extras like sugar, syrup, honey or slices of fruit (most commonly banana).
* Milo: A local powdered drink made from a mixture of malt powder and powdered chocolate. It is stirred into heated milk or water and consumed -- local wisdom is to always use milk instead of water and to put in large, generous spoons of the powder for a stronger, superior flavor. It possesses low sugar and a high content of multiple vitamins and minerals -- Calcium, Iron, and Vitamins A, B1, B2 and C. As such, it's considered a "healthy snack", and often consumed by individuals with athletic tastes.
* Native Food: The Australian equivalent of game meats, such as kangaroo, emu or goanna (a kind of large lizard), mixed with indigenous fruits, nuts, and plants. Also colloquially known as "Bush Tucker", but that's arguably politically incorrect these days. Most Australians don't eat this stuff, as it is the local equivalent of "hippie food", but there is a subtle push from the government trying to rebrand it and market it to the mainstream consumer, and kangaroo meat in particular is starting to show up in Australian restaurants.
** Witchety Grub: Invertebrates of several kinds are part of the Bush Tucker "menu", but the most famous and recognizable are the Witchety Grubs, a species of large, wood-boring moth larvae.
* Sausages: Australia may not be as crazy about them as Germany, but sausages are very common food here, favored for their cheapness and how well they go with the Australian love of grilling meat. Many different varieties exist, mostly distinguished by their basic meat ingredients; beef and pork are the mainstay, followed by chicken, lamb and kangaroo. More exotic versions, such as beef with native chili, most certainly do exist. The iconic no-frills BBQ meal is a grilled sausage with sauce and maybe fried onions wrapped up in a slice of bread.
* The Works Burger: An iconic Aussie spin on the classic American hamburger, this motley creation consists of a fried patty made from minced beef, as well as lettuce, cheese, tomato, onions (usually fried), beetroot, a slice of pineapple, bacon, and a fried egg, all served in a buttered burger bun.
* ANZAC Biscuits: Created by Australian and New Zealand women to send to the soldiers as they fought UsefulNotes/WorldWarII, these long-lasting biscuits are made with rolled oats, coconut and golden syrup as their primary ingredients.
* Arnott's Biscuits: Arnott's is the countries single largest producer of biscuits and crackers, with a spectacularly large array of different items on the menu; you'll see their products in every grocery store and service station across the country. The most iconic are the Shapes (small, flavorful baked crackers), Jatz (large, round, baked crackers), Tim-Tams (two wafers sandwiching a cream filling, covered in chocolate; there are many different flavors, from milk, dark and white chocolate to more exotic affairs) and Mint Slices (chocolate biscuit topped with mint cream, covered in milk chocolate).
* Macadamia Nuts: Native to Eastern Australia, these nearly golf-ball sized nuts are delicious, but infamously hard to get into; hammers are the go-to method of choice.
* Fairy Bread: Seen as a child's treat served at parties, and becoming obscure, this is just soft white bread buttered and spread with hundreds-and-thousands, a small, round, sugary candy. Arnott's (see above) has a biscuit type called by the same name, which is a shortbread biscuit with hundreds-and-thousands glued to it with strawberry icing.
* Damper: A wheat-flour based soda-bread, traditionally cooked on campfires. It's more of a historical food than anything, although workers on remote livestock stations still make it.
* Chicken Parmigiana: A clear marker of the Italian influence on Australian cuisine, this is one of the most widespread "everyday restaurant" foods you'll see; virtually any public eatery that has a menu will serve this dish, which consists of a crumbed chicken fillet smothered in tomato sauce and melted cheese, served with salad, vegetables or thick-cut potato chips ("steak fries" to Americans).
* Cherry Ripe: An iconic Australian candy bar, consisting of dried raspberries and coconut formed into a bar shape and then covered in milk chocolate.
* Slices: These sweet pastries, inherited from Britain, are everywhere to be found in Australia as the sweet treat of choice. The most iconic flavor is the vanilla slice; thick confectioner's custard sandwiched between two sweet crackers, with the top cracker covered in a thick layer of sweet, creamy icing - ironically, most vanilla slices nowadays are topped with passionfruit-flavored cream!
* Ice Cream & Ice Blocks: In a hot, arid country whose denizens have a sweet tooth, frozen sweets are incredibly popular. Aussies typically use the term "ice cream" to refer to frozen milk-based treats that are dished up from a container into a cone or a bowl to be eaten. Ice Blocks are pre-prepared treats consisting of either flavored water ice or ice cream shaped around a stick. Some unusual examples include Splice, which is a fruit juice ice wrapped around a core of vanilla ice cream, and Gaytime, an ice block made of frozen cream covered in chocolate dipped into biscuit pieces.
* Candy: Australians consume a lot of candy, and whilst much of it is British or America in origin, there are some home-grown favorites. Fantales - caramels coated in chocolate and served in individual wrappers, printed with interesting facts, are iconic, as are Minties - large, sticky, gooey, chewy soft mints, whose wrappers are covered in blackly comic little cartoons.


* EverythingsBetterWithPlatypi

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* UsefulNotes/{{Brisbane}}


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Economically, again we find paradox. Although the economy is stable (though you probably won't hear that claim very often), and the country has managed to avoid the riots resulting from austerity measures which have plagued Europe in particular, one thing that is consistently commented on by international visitors, is that Australian food prices are among the highest on the planet.

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Economically, again we find paradox. Although the economy is stable (though you probably won't hear that claim very often), and the country has managed to avoid the riots resulting from austerity measures which have plagued Europe in particular, one thing that is consistently commented on by which the right credits big business and mining for, while the left credits Prime Minister Kevin Rudd's economic stimulus for it. On the flip side, international visitors, is visitors often notice that Australian food food, property and energy prices are among the highest on the planet.
planet. Ironically, Australia is a major food exporter, [[https://theconversation.com/australia-cant-feed-the-world-but-it-can-help-11269 producing enough food to feed 60 million people]], and exports minerals and energy (for example, [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coal_in_Australia half the coal Australia produces is consumed locally, the rest is exported]]). The reason that food and energy prices are so high include:
* Australian agriculture receives [[http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-02-14/malcolm-turnbull-correct-on-farmers-subsidies/5252596 very little, if any, in the way of subsidies]]. Compare with the [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Common_Agricultural_Policy EU]] and the [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Food,_Conservation,_and_Energy_Act_of_2008 USA]].
* The Australian dollar was overvalued during the terms of Howard, Rudd and Gillard, causing the prices of Australian goods to remain the same for Australians, but cost more by foreigners' standards - and thanks to a mining slowdown for the last 2 years, the Australian dollar's value is plummeting, bringing Australian food prices within normal levels for a 1st world country.
* The price of Australian labour is amongst the highest in the world: $17.29 AUD per hour, for a 38 hour work week. Granted, the work week isn't as generous as many EU countries, but the minimum wage is the equivalent to [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_minimum_wages_by_country $11.4 USD per hour]], at purchasing power parity, which Australia has a relatively low level of.
* Energy is expensive despite more than enough Coal or Uranium for everyone because a very strong Anti-Nuclear sentiment in Australia prevents the construction of nuclear power plants, a strong opposition to further coal power plants also exists, and renewable energy projects have slowed under the Federal Liberal government elected in 2013
* Most of all, Australians will complain of petrol (what Americans call "gas") prices being too high, which results from Australia [[WeaksauceWeakness being oil-poor]] - [[http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/opinion/adam-creighton/australias-oil-dependency-is-high-and-rising/news-story/8a9bc36a07767a457a45f50b9fbe0f91 Australia needs to import 75% of its oil needs]]. The petrol is [[http://www.aip.com.au/pricing/internationalprices.htm lightly taxed]], however, and thus is not as expensive as in [[http://www.globalpetrolprices.com/gasoline_prices/ much of the EU]].


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* UsefulNotes/OldBritishMoney was the basis for Australia's old currency with Australian pounds, shillings and so forth. Australia decimalised and addapted the dollar in 1966, but the old currency is used in period pieces like ''Literature/PhryneFisher.''

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* UsefulNotes/OldBritishMoney was the basis for Australia's old currency with Australian pounds, shillings and so forth. Australia decimalised and addapted adapted the dollar in 1966, but the old currency is used in period pieces like ''Literature/PhryneFisher.''

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