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The Independent Weekly
September 10 - 16, 2010
Ann Oliver email@example.com
Restaurateurs are astonished
when the Government and
statisticians say food prices
have not gone crazy.
In a vain attempt to make a fair
profit for our time and effort, we
constantly work out the cost of the
food we cook and sell. We recently
ran our current costing sheet
against the same sheet from four
years ago. With the exception of
eggplant, capsicums and some more
common types of potatoes, nearly
everything was at least 25 per cent
more expensive, so the question
has to be asked: "Where does the
Government get its figures?"
Show me a restaurant in Adelaide
that has the guts to increase its
prices by 25 per cent in the past four
years -- no one would dare!
The most astonishing price
increases are for flour and garlic. A
10kg bag of organic flour has gone
from about $16 to $23, an increase of
43 per cent, while good local garlic
has risen from about $12 to as much
as $30 a kilo, an increase of 150 per
cent. We are all trying to buy local
and give our customers value for
money, but this makes it a very
Meeting budget isn t just difficult
for restaurants; it is tough for
This is the reason we love
kangaroo. It s delicious, easy to
cook, healthy (if you care) and
very cheap. I recently purchased
a kangaroo saddle (3.286kg at $10
per kilo) and three kangaroo tails
(2.866kg at $7.99 per kilo) for a total
cost of $55.75.
If you like your grilled meat
cooked medium to well done,
kangaroo is not a great choice.
The meat has almost no fat and
cooked well done ... well, you might
as well try to eat your silicone
spatula. However, cooked rare to
medium-rare, seared quickly in a
very hot pan with some butter for
added flavour and rested standing
minutes (rare) or 30 minutes
(medium rare), it will be succulent,
warm to the middle and perfectly
set, with no running blood.
The meat is similar to farmed
venison and many of the classic
venison dishes are well-suited to
kangaroo. Get out any old European
cookbook and try something as
obvious and seasonal as braised
red cabbage, potato dumplings or
steamed potatoes, meat jus enriched
with blackcurrant jam, crushed
juniper and a little red wine vinegar
and some grilled, well-rested
kangaroo saddle. You will be very
There are two really good kan-
garoo meat suppliers in Adelaide:
Kanopy Meats, where we have been
buying kangaroo for an astonishing
25 years, and Wild Oz, which also
sells the best goat in Adelaide.
While vaccing is great way to
preserve meats, we do not like the
commonly available supermarket
vacced product. It usually has a
sour and unpleasant smell, and the
meat shows signs of discolouration
We buy fresh roo, clean it, season
it, roll it through our best extra-
virgin (EV) olive oil and vac it, but
never keep it for more than a few
days before using it.
Preparing the meat: There
is the minimum amount of trim
and to prepare all you need to do is
remove the silver membrane.
We brown the trim in a 220C oven
and use it in kangaroo stock, usually
embellished with a roo tail which
has also been browned in a hot
oven. Stock made with roo tail has
a terrific gelatinous quality which,
when reduced, makes a great, sticky,
full-flavoured glaze. We like to use
a lot of vegetables in our stocks
because it keeps them sweet and
balances the meaty flavour.
Trim the ends and use them for
a stir-fry, so you end up with lovely,
evenly sized fillet portions.
Slice the ends thinly and
marinate them with a little
minced garlic ginger, sweet soy
and Lingham s sweet chilli sauce
(newly rebranded as Thai).
This week there have been
plenty of the shiny, beige-skinned
Chinese turnips about -- we love the
contrast between the softness of
oyster mushrooms and the crunch
of the turnips and bean sprouts.
Extra chilli goes without saying.
Kanopy Meats: Shop 15, Market
Plaza Arcade, Adelaide. Ph 8231 4485.
Wild Oz: Adelaide Central Markets
and Westfields at West Lakes,
Beat the budget with
hearty, healthy roo
Rare Saddle of
Served with steamed buns filled
with kangaroo tail braised with
mandarin, star anise, chilli and
ginger, mandarin chilli sauce
Ser ves 8
Bun filling and sauce
1 kangaroo tail (about 1kg), cut into
sections and roasted until browned
in a hot 220C oven
250g Chinese cooking wine
300g ketyap manis
10g whole star anise
4 cinnamon quills
6 Thai chillis, finely sliced
8 mandarins -- peel of 4, strained
juice of 8
20g (peeled weight) green ginger
20g (peeled weight) garlic, finely
65g Chinese black vinegar (or
300g caramelised onion
500g cold water
Preparing the meat
Put everything into a slow cooker
and set on high. Set a timer for two
hours. Breville slow cookers seem
to be hotter than most other brands,
so check after 90 minutes; the liquid
should be simmering gently.
Turn down the heat to low and
cook for another three hours or until
the meat is falling from the bones.
Allow to cool until just warm, then
pull the meat from the bones and
Discard the bones and pull the
large pieces of mandarin peel and
ginger slices from the cooking liquid;
pass the rest of the cooking liquid
through a sieve.
Moisten the tail meat with a little
of the strained sauce and reserve
any remaining cooking liquid for the
To make the buns
Bun dough recipe: www.galaxyguides.
Roll the dough into a cylinder and
cut into 10 x 60g (approx) pieces,
then roll these into balls.
Using as little extra flour as
possible, roll the bun dough out into
a circle that is not more than 1cm
Fill with the moistened tail meat,
seal the edges with water and fold
up.Place on a small square of
baking paper and sit them on a
tray. Repeat the process until the
dough is finished. You should get 10
dumplings at this size.
Cover with plastic food wrap and
refrigerate until ready to cook.
Taking the dumplings out to prove
depends on the room temperature
and the temperature of your fridge. In
cold weather, it will be about two to
three hours; in hot weather, probably
about one-and-a-half hours.
5 kangaroo saddles (about 900g to
1kg), cleaned, seasoned and rolled
through EV olive oil, butter or ghee
Pre-heat oven to 100C and put a
steamer large enough to cook all the
buns on the heat.
Put a rack on a tray in the resting
oven. Sear the saddle in a very hot
pan and put on the rack in the resting
oven; set a timer for 20 minutes.
Steam the dumplings for about
20 minutes and re-heat the sauce,
reducing or adding water as required
to get the perfect consistency.
Slice the saddle about 15mm
thick; serve on a single plate
with buns, meat and sauce or on
individual plates. Don't be surprised
if a fight breaks out for the last buns.
isn't just difficult
This is the reason
we love kangaroo.
It's delicious, easy to
cook, healthy (if you
care) and very cheap.
Fit for a king:
Rare saddle of
Ingredients simmer gently in the slow cooker.
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