Where does Australian cuisine come from? Topic for Discussion 5
Australian Food
Is there really an Australian cuisine? There is, and itís another result of the war, the Depression, and the environment.

In the 1930s, Australia went through some hard times. Scarce food and even scarcer items thanks to World War I, resulted in the culinary masterpiece of a meal that is still served in families to this day.

A piece of meat, two tablespoons of peas or beans, a tablespoon of mashed potato, and some boiled carrots. This meal was eaten 5 days a week and contained all the necessary vitamins, minerals, proteins and calcium Australians needed.

Another interesting thing about this cultural icon is the fact that the food would be served up on the plates in the kitchen. Portions would be divided equally so that any plate could be served to the family member, and you had to finish your plate or there would be no dessert.

In rich families, the meal contained better meat, extra boiled vegetables, and maybe some chutney, barbecue or tomato sauce to add flavour. But you still had to eat everything on your plate as you never knew when the next Depression may happen.

Nowadays, Australians have so much variety to choose from that this relic of the 20th century is fading away. But the recipe is still available as a back up and the few Australian children that still experience it are sure to make sure it wonít last much longer!

Vocabulary Building.
1. Discuss with your tutor some of the words and phrases used in this article.

2. Which words have similar meanings? Draw a line to connect them.

                        cuisine                       severe economic downturn
                        harsh                        disappearing
                        scarce                       various
                        resulted                     servings
                        portions                     led to
                        variety                       rare
                        fading away               difficult
                        Depression                dish

3. Please write (T) True (F) False or (U) Unknown
1. Australian cuisine contains all the vitamins and minerals Australians need in a meal.
2. The Australian cuisine was a result of the 90s recession.
3. Australian children love this dish with brussel sprouts.
4. Vegemite can be included to give the meal flavour.
5. Australia in the 1930s was a harsh time to live in for many people.

4. Questions for Discussion
What is your favourite food? What do you think is the new Australian cuisine? What food did you grow up with? Have you ever eaten chutney? Will you give your children this meal?

Answers to 3.  1. T  2. F  3. U  4. U  5. T


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