Being Australian

One of the foods we love eating in Australia is the meat pie.  We will be celebrating Australia Day on January 26th so I thought there is no better time to celebrate with some of our favourite foods.

You can have plain like above, but most Australians like their meat pies with some tomato sauce.

I like mine with tomato chutney or relish as you can see from the jars it doesn’t last long in our house..our family can’t get enough of it.  I’m going to try making my own soon.

then finished off with a marshmellowy, meringue pavlova dessert topped with cream and lots of ripe fruit, I love piling it with all sorts of berries…you can also top it with sliced banana and passionfruit, peppermint crisp and flake..

Another favourite Aussie thing to do is go to the beach…last weekend my family and I went for a drive to this beautiful beach called St Andrews, it was a long walk through the sand to get there.

But so worth it once we did..

It is nearly the end of the summer school holidays here and we are trying to make the most of every day left by making lots of visits to the beach and catch ups with family and friends, we have had a lovely hot summer so far.  
It’s a very hot night tonight and I can’t sleep so am writing this at 2am in the morning…I’ll include the recipe for the meat pies first thing tomorrow.
Here we go, recipes for meat pie and pavlova…
Meat Pie/s
I make individual ones but it’s just as easy to make a big one if you don’t have the individual pie pans.
1 TBLSP oil, 1 onion finely chopped, 1 garlic clove crushed, 1kg (2.2 pounds) beef mince, 4 TBLSP plain (all purpose) flour, 1 1/2 cups beef stock, 4 TBLSP tomato puree, 2 1/2 TBLSP worcester sauce,  
1TBLSP soy sauce, 1 tsp dried mixed herbs, 1 sheet shortcrust pastry and 1 sheet puff pastry, 1 egg beaten, tomato sauce or chutney to serve.
Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat.  Add the onion & cook for 5 min.
Add the garlic & minced beef & cook for a further 15 minutes.
Stir in the flour, then add stock, tomato puree, worcester sauce, soy sauce, dried herbs and I also add a little bit of vegemite (optional).
Partially cover and cook for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally .  Set aside to cool completely.
Preheat oven to 180 degrees.
Stretch and fully line pie dish with sheet of shortcrust pastry.
Add cooled meat filling.
Top with puff pastry and trim excess pastry & pinch edges to seal.
Brush pie with egg and bake in oven for 25 minutes or until cooked and golden.
Note:  taste filling to see if it is seasoned to your liking, you many need to add more soy or worcester, some salt and pepper, I find a little vegemite (less than a 1/4 of a tsp) gives it some more body.  A substitute for this could be marmite.

8 large eggwhites, pinch of salt, 500g (16oz 1lb) caster sugar (superfine), 1 TBLSP cornflour, 2 tsp white vinegar.

Preheat oven to 180 degrees C.  Line your baking tray with the baking paper and draw a 20cm circle on the paper.

Beat eggwhites & salt until satiny peaks form.  Beat in the sugar a scattered spoonful at a time, until the meringue is stiff and shiny.  Sprinkle over the cornflour & vinegar & fold in lightly.  Mound onto the baking tray with the circle, flatten top & smooth the sides.

Put in the oven and immediately reduce the heat to 150 degrees C.  Cook for 1 1/4 hours.  Turn off the oven and leave pavlova in it to cool completely.  If you’ve got an electric oven, open the oven door.  When cool decorate top with cream that has been whipped with a 1/2 tsp caster (superfine) sugar and a drop of vanilla essence and decorate with fresh fruit or any of the combinations mentioned above.

pavlova recipe:  Nigella from How To Be A Domestic Goddess
Catherine x


  1. Lauren

    Oh, looks so beautiful! We have Aussie neighbors, and I love seeing your recipes matching up with what they tell us about Australia. Can't wait to get the recipe for meat-pie. And with tomato chutney! Yum!

  2. Cathy

    Oh that pavlova looks so divine I could jump right in! I am so with you on the heat – we are having a heatwave in the Cape too, and I'm thinking of moving my office into the bedroom as it's the only room in the house with an aircon…!!! Loving your photos too! Cath xx

  3. Libby

    I just fired up the oven to make a pavlova today – I love making them but mine has a few less eggs in it! Thanks for sharing the meat pie recipe I will have to try that. Your photos are beautiful as always.

  4. noreen

    now i'm hungry – and it's bedtime here! it looks delicious, and your trip to the beach – peaceful. it's so empty! where is everyone? also, the children start school in january, and go until when? we start in august and go until the end of may or beginning of june. thanks for sharing!

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