Saturday, April 11, 2009

Aussie Culture

When I was in Finland, the mother of my host who is a chef asked me what was the national dish of Australia. I could not really answer. I suggested a barbecue steak. It is certainly not kangaroo. I have never tasted kangaroo although I believe it is very nice and certainly low in cholesterol. When I was young, the Sunday lamb or beef roast was an essential part of the week. I rarely eat a roast now, mainly because I cannot cook ,and the ones you buy from the supermarket freezer are very bland.

Last night on the TV news there was a report on a survey of changes in Australian culture. It said the meat pie was once our national dish and it has been replaced by spaghetti bolognese. I still have a meat pie with peas one night per week and very occasionally buy one for lunch. I like spaghetti bolognese and can cook it (okay, with bottled sauce) but it is not good for my hiatus hernia so I again occasionally buy the much blander variety from the supermarket but do not really enjoy it.

I was on much safer ground with our drinking habits. Once Australians were the largest beer drinkers in the world but that has changed markedly. Wine has now overtaken beer but our most frequent drink when out is a cappuccino. Apparently Italians, from whom we copied, are horrified that we drink cappuccinos all day while they only drink it up until (I think) 10am.

I occasionally have a beer when out but do not really enjoy Australian beers. I make up for this when in Germany where I love the beer. I love to drink wine. However I rarely go anywhere without buying a cappuccino. While I drink black expresso at home, I always ask for a cappuccino when out.

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