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Australia: Food, Glorious Food

image of an aussie burgerA surprising aspect of our first trip to Australia was the food. We stayed at an AirBnB apartment in Quinns Rock, north of Perth, and therefore had to cater for ourselves. Nothing teaches you more about a community than what and how they eat. Perth, the city, has restaurants in spades, but the outer environs have more fast food outlets than restaurants. The usual outlets of McDonalds and KFC are plentiful, but there are so many more local outlets that they actually dwarf restaurants. Australians living in the suburbs seem to like fast food. Having said that, the food is extremely good.

We stumbled across a small supermarket called Basil’s where we bought our first provisions. What an eye opener it was. The shop, though small, was exceptionally well laid out and the produce was displayed in such a way as to entice you to buy. You don’t simply buy from Basil’s, you experience Basil’s.

The staff, in all our experiences in Australia, where happy, smiling and above all friendly. We were staying in Quinns Rock for nine days and at the end of that period I noticed that Basil’s sold Pork Pies. I’m English, a Leicester lad, and one of Leicester’s more famous products, after Red Leicester and Stilton Cheeses, is the Pork Pie. Pork Pies in Leicester are like a religious experience, so much so, we eat Pork Pies for breakfast on Christmas Day. Put simply, it’s not a Pork Pie unless it’s a Walker’s Pork Pie made in Leicestershire. I’ve tried Pork Pies in many parts of the world and this was my first taste of a Pork Pie made down under. It was a revelation. Basil’s Pork Pies are the nearest thing to a Walker’s Pork Pie I have ever tasted… and that was on our last but one day before we moved further south to Bussleton. Living in Cyprus for ten years has taught me to do without certain things, like Pork Pies. But eating one of Basil’s Pork Pies and then moving away the next day… it was a true double whammy.

We bought sausages in Basil’s as well, but declined their special offer of outback sausages for no particular reason except I’m not partial eating Kangaroo. I’ve eaten Ostrich steak and it was pretty good. I’ve even eaten snails in a posh French restaurant, but Kangaroo has never appealed to me. Call me fickle, but Kangaroo sausages for breakfast! That’s way too fast food for my liking.

Tom Kane © 2018

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