Skippy and Big Bird's Demise: Kangaroo Brains in Emu Fat

Exhibition of old Australian cookbooks now on at the State Library of New South Wales

SYDNEY (AFP) - An exhibition of historic Australian cookbooks has revealed the tastes of the country's pioneers, including recipes for bandicoot, kangaroo brains and black swans.

The curator of the State Library of New South Wales exhibition, Pat Turner, said the cookbooks showed how local cuisine developed from early days, when most Australians relied on British staples with a few curiosities thrown in.

"It's been very popular," she said. "Lots of people are very interested in cookbooks, even if they don't do much cooking themselves."

In "The Antipodean Cookery Book", first published in 1895, Mrs. Lance Rawson has a stew recipe with listed ingredients including a dozen parrots "well-picked and cleaned."

Even less appetising is a recipe in Australia's first known cookbook, dating from 1864, for a dish called "slippery bob", consisting of kangaroo brains mixed with flour and water then fried in emu fat

Indeed, if Australian's reflected on this and changed their eating habits back to kangaroos then agriculture here would probably get a whole lot more sustainable. As Gary Paul Nabhan book, “Renewing America’s Food Traditions: Saving and Savoring the Continent’s Most Endangered Foods” revealed eating local species is actually a great way to protect them.



    slippery bob, hah, gross! I'd love to see this.

    Was watching a spot on CNN a few nights ago, with a spot about how kangaroo's methane production is very low, then I websearched and read that Australian scientists are trying to put kangaroo stomachs in cows.

    the other good thing they mentioned about kangaroo meat is that it is always wild and changing areas over to a semi-wild, pre-agricultural state is good for native flora - but presumably they would inevitably be somehow farmed, if Australians made this meat a more regular part of their diet?

    my australian friends assure me it can be very good but needs to be cooked properly otherwise it can be a bit dry.


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