Fry me kangaroo brown, sport! Aussies tucking into more native animals

Fry me kangaroo brown, sport! Aussies tucking into more native animals

Apart from the 'roo, emu, wallaby, possum and crocodile are making their way into kitchens nationwide

Australian game meatWallaby: the Australian version of veal.Wild boar, rabbit, goat and venison may rank as alternative foods for carnivores around the world, but a slowly growing industry in Australia is taking to lesser-known native animals.

Australian farmers are reporting an increased demand for local game supplies as they make their way onto restaurant menus -- particularly in Melbourne.

Pubs are beginning to order game meat for their bistros. Philosophically, consumers are taking to game due to its environmentally-friendly, methane-free qualities.

A native food revolution? Not quite. But there is a push for these meats to gain more local and international attention, reports The Age.

Wallaby

''They're fussy eaters, they like to eat the farmer's best pasture,'' executive director of Flinders Island Meat, James Madden, told The Age.

But other fussy eaters are taking to the fine-textured, mild wallaby meat -- it's often confused with lamb, but said to be the indigenous version of veal.

It’s now hopping its way onto some of Melbourne’s best menus. Sarti, an Italian restaurant in the city, has a bush tucker variant on the wallaby fillet: served up with white asparagus cream, charred green asparagus, wattleseed oil and wild blueberries.

Emu

Australian game meatThe rich meat of this big bird is actually good for you (if you like meat).Emu has a deep, red color and is a rich meat. If you’re not turned off by now, it’s also low in calories and fat. Nash Cowie, of Wangara Poultry and Game, told The Age that the emu’s popularity has soared and it’s now the favored big bird, ahead of the ostrich.

The Plume, a Chinese restaurant in Doncaster, Melbourne, serves a sautéed emu fillet in spicy sauce.

Crocodile

Delicate, free-range, north Queensland croc meat has an increased export market to China, but is also a good replacement for chicken or pork in southeast Asian curries.

High in protein and low in fat, the secret lies in not overcooking it.

Chinatown’s Mask of China is serving up a sautéed fillet, while a Vietnamese crocodile stir-fry is on the menu at Song Huong.

Possum

Hello, possums. This tough meat suits a stew but hasn’t quite made it into restaurant kitchens. Environmentally sustainable, the chipolata sausages from Tasmania's Lenah Game Meats could soon be more popular on barbecues.

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