My (Food-Filled) Country

When oversea's visitors come to our land, any patriotic Australian will make lists of all the wonderful places that they themselves never go to, but believe show our country in the best light. Phillip Island, the Great Barrier Reef, Barossa Valley, Uluru, Margaret River, the MCG (you can take the girl out of Melbourne, but can't take Melbourne out of the girl). Well, like any food-loving foodie (are there any other types of foodies?), when I have visitors, my mind goes down a slightly different track. What foods symbolise Australia? What MUST they try whilst here? How can I incorporate food experiences into the traditional sightseeing activities, and convince dad to pay for them?  

I've been very excited of late. Very soon my Canadian cousins will be visiting Australia for the first time, and my head has been stewing over these questions. And the more experiences I have been having throughout Australia, the more I struggle to answer these questions (especially the dad one). Is it possible to symbolise Australia in one dish? In one meal? I couldn't, so instead I turned to poetry...

My (Food-Filled) Country

I love a food-filled country,

A land of all cuisines,

Of giant lamb souvlakis,

Of spicy lamb tagines.

I love it’s endless cafes,

I love it’s barista men,

Their beauty and their accents -

Their coffee- ten out of ten!

 

A stark difference in the outback

To what the cities have to eat,

Don’t be fooled though, it’s not solely,

Three veggies and fresh meat.

Fire’s cooking a batch of damper,

As the billy starts to boil,

And freshly caught barra is baking 

with lemon myrtle, in al-foil.

 

Core of my stomach, my country!

It’s endless options to choose,

Sushi trains or tapas bars,

Or places for fancy booze.

But then dessert time comes near,

And we’re faced with a problem

Will it be churros, or gelati,

Or sago pudding, we’ll be gobbling?

 

Core of my stomach, my country!

Land of the Melting Pot,

For we have come from all over the globe ,

But our traditional foods- we’ve not forgot

Over the suburbs of Australia,

Smell, what’s in our oven? 

It’s a fusion of all our cultures

And a true flavour eruption .

 

A food-obsessed country,

A tasty, fortunate land.

All you who have not yet eaten here,

You will not understand. 

So cheers to salami,

To stroganov, satay and snails,

I speak for all Australians:

My stomach, you will never fail.