Thursday, June 18, 2009

Modern Australian Cuisine: Friend or Foe

I love the show MasterChef Australia. Love it!

Unfortunately, the whole Modern Australian Cuisine thing is just far too sophisticated for me.

It's menus like this, which I cannot interpret, that demonstrate that I am far too Ignorant American for Modern Australian Cuisine.

When I see the following items on a menu, I know I'm in over my head:
  • confit
  • bacon powder (separately I can accept either, but together-- well, why would someone make delicious bacon into a powder? Why, I ask you?)
  • foam (now I'm getting a little nauseated)
  • sweetbreads (now I'm actually considering where the closest vomit receptacle may be)
  • prawn foam (why, why oh why? wasn't other foam enough, did they have to make foam from shrimp?) Please ignore if this all just sounds foamy-licious to you.
In other news:

According to my husband Maccas (that's Australian for McDonalds) has raised the price of the soft serve ice cream cones from $0.30 to $0.50. Still a bargain at twice as much I reckon.

And there's this:

My five year old loves sushi. Why am I amused by this? Probably because it's just so 2008, not so 2000late. I think it's amusing that Kindergartners eat sushi these days, instead of fruit rollups.

IMG_0253 by you.

And you know your kid is turning Australian when they ask for a sausage roll for lunch.
It kind of turns my stomach, but I'm still supportive.

IMG_0134 by you.



Teresi Family Oz Blog said...

Prawn foam? Sounds like something that you'd find in a stagnant lake somewhere. I skipped the show, but I keep hearing it was pretty good so maybe I'll have to catch it next week. After attempting to watch Australian Idol and Australia's Next Top Model I've taken a break from home grown reality programming.

Anonymous said...

It's not Mod Oz that you don't understand, it's Molecular Gastronomy, so don't feel bad.
Mod Oz was around long before the foam, powder and air craze.
Molecular gastronomy is different-- I see it as art rather than food. It makes you think about food in new ways, but it doesn't necessarily nourish you.
BTW, I almost reached through the computer screen and ripped that sausage roll out of your son's hand. I miss me some spicy chicken sausage roll!

Kristie said...

Foam and Prawn Foam, EW. What the heck is bacon powder and what do you use it for? I cannot fathom bacon powder.

Florida Girl In Sydney said...

Ana- I think the last episode must be soon-- it was really good-- put it on the list for next time!

Opinioneater- How could I have never seen spicy chicken sausage rolls???

Kristie- Why make bacon into a powder? Why? Why? Why?

Anonymous said...

but will they ever eat vegemite?

Florida Girl In Sydney said...

Nursemyra- My 4 year old loves vegemite-- the 5 year old doesn't.

Leila said...

Oh sausages rolls how I miss thee!!

I have tagged you -

Anonymous said...

Sausage rolls and sushi. Better than what my daughter had this morning. On our way to day camp, I asked her if she'd made herself some breakfast. She said, "Yep! Barbeque sauce!"

Yum . . .

And we have food, I swear to God!

A Free Man said...

Sausage rolls are nasty, but they do have some fine sushi down here. I have it for lunch every Friday. Zach's not converted to the sushi yet, but he will be!

Amanda said...

I reckon that goes far beyond what I'd consider Mod's being pretentious for the sake of it.

When I think Mod Oz, I think clean flavours and great produce. Sepia's menu leaves me a bit cold, really.

Florida Girl In Sydney said...

Leila- Sausage rolls told me they miss you too.

Cheekofgod- I like me some bbq sauce too-- I'd eat it for breakfast.

Freeman- I'm addicted to sushi here too, I have to eat it at least 3x a week.

Amanda- Would you say Masterchef is making Modern Australian? Most of it looks really good to me!

Marketing Mama said...

Those pics are super cute. I wish my kids would be exposed to things like sushi and sausage rolls. :)

Amanda said...

I think the kingfish with the zucchini salad they did in Masterclass the other night is defo Mod Oz.

Interesting to see that SMH have called Sepia a restaurant to watch: Makes sense that the chef is a disciple of Tetsuya...the food smacks of the same 'fusion' approach.

Oh, and, I've tagged you in a little meme if you're keen to play!

Erin said...

I am glad to know that you are a Masterchef lover too. Gregg and I watch it religiously! But yes, Mod Oz can be confusing. As a sidenote, have you read any of Bill Granger's cookbooks? He's a great Aussie chef, but SO uncomplicated. I love his recipes!

I think it is fantastic Beji is into sushi! He's so cool, so hip!

I'm with you on the sausage roll thing. Yuck. Sad thing is that once he acquires a taste for it, it might never leave him. Gregg still eats them from time to time. Ugh.

Erin said...

Benji. I can spell. (Well sort of!) ;-)

rinniez said...

I LOVE Masterchef... my 4 housemates and I watch EVERY episode.
The two boys wont let us speak a word while the show is on!
And everytime they cook something they bring it over and show us and talk about the 'flavours of the dish' and the 'presentation'. They both think they're Masterchefs haha.

and I adore Sausage Rolls and Sushi yum yum yum!!!


JD at I Do Things said...

A lot of that fancy stuff on the menu sounds just like good ol' American cuisine that can be found on such shows as Top Chef.

I don't ever want to find foam on my plate unless I put it there. Which is unlikely.

Rassles said...



NinaBellina said...

I love that B is such a foodie!! -I'm with O on sausage rolls - yum! I don't get the Oz connection though?? In NYC sausage rolls are delish tubes o' meat with grilled peppers & onions, all rolled up into a pizza dough and baked - I'm thinking delish - Am I missing something here? Is Masterchef like IronChef?? Wish that we could watch cooking shows together : ) Miss & love you

ian said...

We're hooked on Masterchef too -it really is an addictive programme.

I think foam is one of those things that chefs put on meals to show off - we had a meal out at a Michelin starred restaurant in the UK and every dish had foam all over - it honestly looked like someone had spat all over my plate. Not a fan at all - and prawn foam sounds even more disgusting.

Gypsy said...

Prawn foam? Bleh.

Anonymous said...

It's not that you are a dumb American it's that the culinary world has gone bat-shit about gastronomic science. Now I am all about innovation, but it ticks me off when they branch off into pretension. Mint and Miso infusion? Give me a break. ok rant over :)

Christine said...

Whatever they might be eating, those are some cute kids you got there.

riesdownunder said...

Yes, we are up in Mona Vale. This being our first winter, wondering why it is so cold! And rainy! Thank god we passed the shortest day of the year. Our kids love it here.... but they won't touch the vegemite. I have had great days, and super difficult ones too... wondering how it will be at the 2year mark?
Thanks for a sneak peek.

Anonymous said...

My shrimper eats sushi! On my birthday, we went to a place that served sushi as part of their pan asian menu...when it arrived, he joyfully tossed his chopsticks in the air and yelled "YAY! SUSHI!!!" My darling hubby hung his head and muttered something about bait.

So, your darling 5 year old is not alone...

lilDdownunder said...

I love MasterChef as well and am so bummed I missed the Christmas in July challenge last night! I've been here four and a half years and can't get in to Vegemite or Sausage Rolls (not to mention Cabanosi) no matter how hard my boyfriend gets me to try. I'm more of a fake sushi eater (i.e. California Rolls and Crunch Rolls) but I've been disappointed by all the rolls I've had here so far.

Marvin the Martian said...

Ha - when you return to the States, you'll spend years deprogramming your children from wanting Aussie food. ;-) How long does Vegemite keep, anyway?