Australian food habits

The traditional, Anglo-inspired dinner of ‘meat and three veg’ followed by stewed fruit and custard jelly has in the last 20 years been ousted by a culinary amalgam of all that Australia’s multicultural society and multifarious landscapes have to offer. 

The new Australian style is still emerging and it takes in the full range of ethnically authentic migrant cuisines as well as the boldly innovative style of Australia’s best restaurateurs and chefs. That is why there is a vast choice in good-value and interesting eating.

Not so long ago vegemite, damper, billy tea, pavlova and pie floaters were seen as the only authentic Australian contributions to world cuisine. Now seekers of a fair-dinkum Aussie dining experience might find themselves joining the Sunday arvo throng in Sydney’s Chinatown for ‘yum cha’; gorging on bratwurst and sauerkraut in the German-flavoured Adelaide Hills; delighting in a Turkish banquet in Melbourne; or dining out in Hobart on snap-fresh sashimi and sushi.

Wheat, rice, oranges, bananas, and grapes are just a few of the crops that grow in abundance throughout the country. Meat has always been a large part of the Australian diet, although Australians (like others around the world) began to be concerned about controlling cholesterol and fat in their diet, and decreased their consumption of meat slightly toward the end of the twentieth century. Kangaroo, though once a popular meat in Australia's early history, is no longer widely consumed; beef, lamb, pork, poultry, and seafood are more common in twenty-first century Australia.

Australian migrant traditions have endowed the national cuisine with all the above and more – great coffee, every kind of cheese, fresh and cured meats, olives and olive oil, and fresh Asian vegies like bok choy and gai larn as well as many feisty spices. But not all influences have come from foreign shores and good use is made of Australian native or ‘bush’ foods like wattleseeds, witchetty grubs, macadamia nuts, kangaroo, crocodile and bush tomatoes.

For breakfast (brekkie) Australians have a simple cuppa (tea or coffee) taken with toast, butter and vegemite, or a rich repast of bacon and eggs, or a bowl of muesli with fresh fruit and yogurt or milk.

For a lunch they choose the popular takeaway sanga (sandwich on white, brown or wholegrain bread), focaccia or bagel with an unlimited choice of fillings. Also they have lunch: power-broking, networking and socializing at bistros, tavernas, cafes and restaurants.

Dinner - is the main meal of the day. Spaggy bol- spaghetti bolognese is one of the most requested kid dishes, but usually the menu is composed with some kind of meat and vegetables, always have potatoes or mash potatoes. This means the traditional English style meal Meat + 3 Vegetables. The rice has been introduced by the Asian culture (30% of the population) but the consume is still very low ( generally they don't know how to do very well and the outcome is a very sticky rice).

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