It's AUSTRALIA DAY today so I won't consider it too garish to get a little patriotic say a big G'day to all of you! And if you were thinking that we are all putting that trite little shrimp on the barbie then think again, first of all we call them prawns down here and were most likely going to be putting snags or chops on the barbie. Yes, snags or chops. Sausages or steaks.
You have to love the Aussie lexicon. It's baffling and nonsensical to the outsider; we love to attach silly terms to words that are in perfect working order and love to shorten everything, but if you are Australian it makes perfect sense. Like a cup of tea being a cuppa, chewing gum becomes chewie, breakfast being breakkie, and anyone called Darren, Karen and Lauren will indubitably be given the nickname Dazza, Kazza, and Lozza. I love being Australian.
Another thing quintessentially Australian and proudly so, is the barbie- the barbeque. Now I'm pretty sure it wasn't the early settlers who thought up this way of grilling meat over hot coals, I'm sure it was around for a lot longer than that. But what we do pride ourselves in are our barbies. Most people will get together today and put a few snags on their barbie, have a beer and good laugh. We're not into formality and being all ceremonious about things, and the barbie epitomises all that is casual about the Australian lifestyle.
There's something about meat that is cooked over an open flame that just makes it taste better. All that smoke and fire permeating the meat, charring the outside and leaving the inside tender. It's a joy to behold and even more so to eat.
Right now I'm on a bit of a sausage bent. I have it with my pasta, I have in my sandwiches and I have it on my pizza. Right now I'm obsessed with finding good sausages all over Sydney and for this moment my taste buds go ga-ga for any sausage by the Eumundi Smokehouse people. They are a small business operating out of Dulwich Hill and if you're in Sydney and you like your meat, then this is your Mecca. They also have stalls at several markets like the monthly Pyrmont ones and the Farmer's Market in the Entertainment Quarter and most of their stuff can be found at organic wholefood stores like Macro and Aboutlife.
Their chorizos are probably one of the best I have tasted in Sydney, and at $32/kilo for the Russian Farmer's sausage, it's gold for the discriminating carnivore. As much as the shop is filled with exotic fare, there are also simpler stuff that I find are a delight- like the beef and Guinness, lamb and rosemary, chicken and leek, Tolouse and Italian sausages. My personal favourite is the lamb and rosemary. When you cook them up, the kitchen fills up with that distinct aroma of lamb, and soon enough it's perfume has summoned everyone to the kitchen.
I went to the farmer's market at the old Fox Studios lot this week to get my ration of sausages for the weekend and it seems that most of Sydney had the same idea. By the time I had arrived at the Eumundi stall most of their sausages had already sold out including the lamb and rosemary, so I was left with what was still there. Not that the stuff left behind was second-rate. It's actually top-notch stuff that I thoroughly enjoy today.
So have a barbie and get a few sausage sangas (sausage sandwiches) and beers into your belly, be up standing for the national anthem and enjoy this beautiful land we call Australia.
Eumundi Smokehouse Sydney
402 New Canterbury Rd,
Dulwich Hill, NSW
Phone: (02) 9569 0205
Opening Hours: Thursday-Friday 11am-6pm, Saturday 7am-2pm