Broome’s Bush Tucker Tastings
Australian bush tucker is an exquisite collection of ingredients unique to Australia, from herbs and berries to spices and nuts – there is truly something delicious here for everyone! Australia is home to some truly spectacular culinary destinations.
Experience Indigenous food culture on a tour with Bart. He provides four cultural experiences from beach to bush, spear fishing the traditional way and exploring 130 million-year-old dinosaur footprints.
Bush tucker is an Australian culinary tradition dating back 60,000 years, when indigenous Australians relied upon local plants and animals as food or medicine. Today, bush tucker can be found regularly featured on restaurant menus across Australia; native ingredients are being rediscoverd by chefs who understand how best to incorporate its natural flavours.
Broome, an eclectic pearling town where bush meets beach, offers many authentic Aboriginal dining experiences that are both delectable and educational. Join Ngemba Weilwan woman Sharon Winsor at Warakirri Dining for an immersive cultural experience featuring native foods, botanicals and music of Aboriginal origin – from bunya nuts to green ants! – before listening to Kuku Yalanji hosts share music ceremonies and storytelling.
Over several years ago, Centacare Kimberley’s Nirrumbuk Aboriginal Corporation in Broome established its Aboriginal Community Garden to showcase local indigenous foods and herbs, from Davidson plums and lilly pilly flowers to mountain pepper and saltbush plants. As well as being a successful project, this garden also maintains family tradition by sharing knowledge through food sharing and storytelling.
Experience traditional smoking ceremonies and vibrational healing techniques on a 90-minute Noongar Healing Tour led by Bart Duncan, who combines his professional training in cultural development with his love of bush tucker to share his connection to country. Or join a Mabu Buru Tour and be transported into stories of Dreamtime around campfire with didgeridoo lessons under a blanket of stars before visiting significant sites like massive shell middens or 130 million-year-old dinosaur footprints!
2. Wattleseed Damper
Bush spices like hazelnut contain rich, fragrant flavors that pair perfectly with milled saltbush to produce damper, an Australian unleavened bread. Pair this snack with billy tea as an exquisite complement to ricotta gnocchi with warrigal greens smothered in an irresistibly rich burnt butter sauce seasoned with lemon myrtle for the ultimate decadent experience!
With bush tucker ingredients now appearing on fine dining menus across Australia, indigenous food and culture have never been more in-demand. At Flames of the Forest’s Aboriginal Cultural Experiences, dine beneath the stars in this World Heritage-listed Wet Tropic rainforest while feasting on dishes such as pressed wallaby with fermented quandong and native peach; or enjoy dishes such as lilly pilly with Davidson plum, gin thyme and puffed ancient grains for an unforgettable experience.
At Ayers Rock Resort, a seven-course dinner showcases Indigenous produce transformed by chefs into modern yet delectable dishes, such as pepper squid with wild rosemary or kangaroo meat with herb-crusted kobe beef and saffron yoghurt. Another highlight is the Sound of Silence dinner overlooking Uluru-Kata Tjuta where diners are treated to dishes featuring everything from lilly pilly flowers to Davidson plum fruits served under blanket of darkness with astronomical tours included as well.
Western Australia and Northern Territory provide visitors with unparalleled experiences of Aboriginal life and culture, where visitors can hunt honey ants for honey ant honeycomb and spear fish traditional methods in remote waterholes. Meanwhile, in the Kimberley region Dale Tilbrook holds boomerang making workshops followed by lunch featuring kangaroo meatballs made from bush limes, sandalwood nuts, local coastal greens, Quandong/wattleseed damper (in season).
Quandongs are small bright red Australian fruits resembling apricots with tart rhubarb flavors that grow on a plant called desert quandong (Santalum acuminatum), found across Australia’s desert regions and semi-arid zones. Quandongs provide an excellent source of Vitamin C and can be added to drinks, jams or eaten as snacks for optimal nutritional benefits.
Quandongs are nutrient-rich tropical fruit with medicinal uses that make an outstanding addition to Western Australia’s cuisine. Their versatile nature means they are often added as dessert toppings or used as garnish for meat dishes, while dried slices can even be used in place of apple in pie fillings! Plus they can be eaten raw or cooked and can even be added raw into salads or baked into cakes!
The resort’s commitment to bush tucker is evident in its menus which showcase numerous desert plants and herbs found throughout Australia’s outback. Bush tucker can also be found daily free activities like the Kimberley Cooking Experience and Desert Garden Walk guided by an Indigenous local. Furthermore, guests can learn more about Indigenous culture at Bart McGuire Cultural Experiences.
Experienced Aboriginal guide and tour operator David has professional training in community development that allows him to bring Indigenous history and culture alive on his guided tours that range from 1.5 hours up to five. You may visit sites like Didirrgun Shell Midden or trail 130 million-year old dinosaur footprints during one or all five-hour tours with this tour operator.
Dining with Fervor offers an unforgettable way to explore Broome’s north coast culture and lifestyle. Led by expert chefs and indigenous locals, Fervor provides a delicious feast that both informs and educates; offering saltbush, pigface, wattleseed damper and marron dishes among many others! A truly unforgettable culinary experience which will deepen your knowledge about both its inhabitants and land itself.
4. Macadamia Nuts
Macadamia is a genus of four evergreen trees in the family Proteaceae that are widely recognized for their exquisitely flavoured seeds, used as bushfood by indigenous Australians for thousands of years prior to European colonisation. Now widely cultivated worldwide in subtropical and tropical climates alike, its nuts provide calcium, phosphorus, iron, vitamin B1 as well as 73% fat content – typically enjoyed roasted, salted or mixed into sweet foods like white chocolate macadamia cookies but raw nuts may also be consumed!
In the 1980’s, Australia experienced a culinary transformation, as chefs started using local ingredients in their dishes and disposable income increased due to a rise in consumption of exotic and unique food items. An ABC television series called Bush Tucker Man hosted by Les Hiddens helped popularise native food consumption by taking viewers around Australia and highlighting all of its culinary treasures.
Wula Gura Nyinda Eco Cultural Adventures owner Darren “Capes” Capewell now offers authentic indigenous experiences on country. You’ll learn about local Aboriginal culture through animal tracking, tasting bush tucker and locally caught seafood dishes, as well as didgeridoo lessons – truly unique ways to immerse yourself in Indigenous culture in Western Australia and Northern Territory which both boast large tracts of native title protected land.
Mangoes epitomise the tropical lifestyle in Broome. You’ll find them everywhere from curry and kebabs to local markets and cafes as well as 18 Degrees Bar & Restaurant, where their drinks use Kimberley monsoonal rainwater as well as native bush botanicals – try pairing your White Pearl Gin drink with one of their curated cheese boards.
Australian indigenous people have long relied upon the fruits, vegetables and seeds found within Australia’s bushland for sustenance, while these distinctive flavours have made their way onto top-tier menus across the country. Their distinctive tastes are now appearing everywhere from cocktails to entrees – such as Uluru’s Sails in the Desert restaurant featuring red-braised caramelised wallaby tail and Davidson plum sorbet as examples; Sydney Billy Kwong and Melbourne Vue de Monde both embrace bush tuck with dishes such as Kangaroo cheek risotto and wagyu beef with native pepper berry (which has subtle liquorice notes) among others.
At Azuki in Broome, Executive Chef Rani Wagner doesn’t shy away from using local ingredients in her cuisine. She sources pearl meat from Cygnet Bay Pearl Farm nearby and currently looking for local suppliers of homegrown paw paw and jackfruit to be cooked tempura style or added into curries or curries. Incorporating Blachan into her menu as another uniquely Broome ingredient offers unique flavour combinations like chilli pepper, garlic cloves and paprika mixed with other savoury herbs and spices is sure to delight diners at Azuki Restaurant.