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20 Bush Tucker Recipes

After posting an infographic on our Facebook page about the 10 Australian Native Foods you need in your kitchen from 1 million women; we have had people ask for recipes that use these ingredients.

On a side note you may not know that in a previous life I owned by own restaurant and catering business and even though I never wish to own or operate a food business my love of cooking has never diminished and I am passing the love of cooking to Belle.

From the responses on Facebook I have put together a selection of recipes using Bush Tucker.

I have gathered these over the years and have tested them. I have also given credit to the author and have provided links.

Hope you enjoy

Sally & Belle

Finger Lime and Lemon Syrup Cake

Finger Lime Tea Cake

Seriously simple,

Seriously ......

Seriously a winner every time!


Zest from two Pearl Finger Limes (around 1 tsp) Two tablespoons of finely grated lemon rind Three tablespoons of lemon juice 3/4 cup (180ml) vegetable oil Two eggs One cup (280g) thick natural yoghurt 1¾ cups (385g) caster (superfine) sugar Two cups (300g) self-raising (self-rising) flour

Finger Lime Frosting

Two Pearl Finger Limes (or any other pink Finger Lime variety) ¾ cup (120g) granulated sugar

¼ cup (60ml) lemon juice Tablespoon of boiling water


Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F)

Place the oil, eggs, rind, lemon juice, yoghurt and sugar in a bowl and whisk to combine.

Sift over the flour and stir until smooth.

Pour the mixture into a greased 24cm ring tin and bake for 35 minutes or until cooked when tested with a skewer.

While the cake is still hot remove from the tin and place on a plate.

To make the lemon frosting, gently stir together the sugar and lemon juice.

Once mixed through, gently squeeze your Finger Limes into the bowl and gently stir through.

Spoon over the cake and allow to set.


Recipe from Boutique Citrus

Oysters, Finger Lime, Ginger, Cucumber and Chilli

Oysters with Australian Finger Limes, Cucumber & Chilli

One of my go to recipes when I used to cater.


100 mls rice wine vinegar

1 Teaspoon of finely chopped chilli

2 tablespoons rice bran oil

2 tablespoons of finely chopped cucumber

1 tsp soy sauce

1 tsp freshly grated ginger

Juice of 1 lime

Pinch of caster sugar

24 freshly shucked oysters

1 finger lime, halved lengthways, beads (vesicles) scooped out


Whisk vinegar, oil, soy, ginger, lime juice, chili, cucumber and sugar in a bowl until sugar dissolves. Arrange oysters on a platter. Just before serving, spoon vinaigrette over the oysters and scatter with finger lime beads.


Quandong's have an important role in many Indigenous cultures as it is highly nutrition and contains twice as much vitamin C as an orange.

The kernel was and is still used by Aboriginals for medicinal purposes. The tree is slow growing and the wood is used for making tradition bowls such as Coolamons.

Quandong Chutney

Quandong Chutney

I make a whole batch of this chutney as it is super delicious and great as a gift. Use it on cheese boards or some crusty bread and leg ham ..... MMMmmm mmm

Prepare fruit as for jam. To every 1.4 kg. of fruit add 1/2 cup of water and 500 grams. of sugar. Cook until fruit is soft, then add 1 small bottle of Worcestershire sauce. Boil for a few minutes. Bottle and cork.

Bush Tomatoes

Recommended combinations: Goes great with chill, pepper, brown sugar, tomatoes, onions, eggplants and potatoes.

Note: Don't be too liberal with the old bush tomato as it will make your recipe bitter.

Bush Tomato Scones

Bush Tomato Scones

This is a Favourite of the Devow Family, the recipe is adapted from SBS Chef Mark Olive


4 cups plain flour

1pinch of salt

1 tbsp. baking powder

3 tbsp. butter

1 cup akajura (bush tomato), finely chopped

1/2 cup finely chopped parsley

3 cups milk (approximately), plus extra for brushing


Pre-heat the oven to 200°C. Place flour in a large mixing bowl, add salt and baking powder. Rub the fat (butter) into the flour until it resembles breadcrumbs.

Add bush tomato, parsley and mix through.

Gradually add the milk, a little at a time, until you have a soft dough.

Knead for a few minutes.

Press gently so the dough is about 3cm high.

Cut out scones or roll into a circle and cut part way through (see pic), transfer to a baking tray lined with nonstick baking paper and rest for 10 minutes.

With a pastry brush, brush the tops of the scones with a little milk and bake for approximately 20 minutes or until brown on the top.

Eat Warm with Lashings of cold butter

Bush Tomato Soup with Parmesan Crisps

Bush Tomato Soup with Parmesan Crisps


1 tablespoon olive oil 1 onion, chopped 1 clove garlic, crushed 2 tablespoons ground bush tomato 4 rashers smoked bacon, finely diced 10 ripe tomatoes, chopped 1 cup chicken or vegetable stock salt and freshly ground black pepper natural yoghurt, to serve chopped chives, to serve Parmesan crisps olive oil spray 80 g grated parmesan ground bush tomato, for sprinkling


Heat the oil in a large saucepan and sauté the onion and garlic until softened.

Add the bush tomato, bacon, chopped tomato and sugar and simmer gently for about 30 minutes.

The tomatoes will break down and release their liquid.

Meanwhile, make the crisps.

Preheat the grill to hot.

Line a baking tray with baking paper and spray lightly with olive oil spray.

Divide the grated Parmesan into eight portions and place in little piles on the prepared tray, leaving room for spreading.

Sprinkle a small amount of bush tomato over each pile, then place under the grill and cook until the parmesan spreads to a flat disk and cooks to a rich golden colour.

Remove from oven and leave crisps to cool completely before carefully removing from the tray.

Add the stock to the soup and bring back to the boil.

Season with salt and pepper.

Using a hand-held blender, puree the soup until the tomato skins have been incorporated.

Ladle the hot soup into bowls and garnish with a dollop of yoghurt and a sprinkling of chives.

Serve the parmesan crisps on the side.

Sea Parsley

Sea Parsley or also known as Sea Celery is found all over the southern coast line of Australia. Sea Parsley Sea Parsley/Celery grows in a prostrate manner over rocky ledges and sandy ridges, and its small white flower clusters give rise to large amounts of seed in the summer months. It has a stronger taste then European counterpart and I believe is more flavourful.

The filling recipe makes enough filling for a tall quiche in a 9-inch wide by 2-inch tall tart pan. If you are using a commercial frozen crust, you may find you have enough filling for 2 quiche pies.

Smoked Salmon, Goats Cheese and Sea Parsley Quiche

Smoked Salmon, Sea Parsley and Goats Cheese Quiche

I think mine is much more delicious.


1 packet of short crust pastry or if you are an angel you could make it from scratch

One 9-inch x 2-inch high tart pan with removable bottom (or can use a 10-inch pie pan)

1 Tbsp. olive oil

4 medium shallots, thinly sliced (about 1/2 cup)

6 ounces smoked salmon, chopped

4 ounces’ goat cheese, crumbled

6 large eggs

2 cup milk

1 cup cream

2 Tbsp. dried Sea Parsley

1 teaspoon lemon zest

2 1/2 teaspoons salt

1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


Preheat oven to 375°F. Heat oil in a small skillet on medium heat.

Add the shallots and cook until translucent, a couple minutes, remove from heat.

Whisk eggs in a medium bowl.

Whisk in goat cheese.

Whisk in milk, cream, dill, lemon zest, salt, and black pepper.

Whisk in the shallots.

Line the bottom of the quiche crust with half of the smoked salmon.

Pour half of the egg/cheese/milk/cream mixture over the salmon in the quiche shell.

Layer down the remaining salmon, and pour the remaining egg/milk/cream mixture over it.

Place the quiche pan on a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet.

Transfer to oven.

Bake at 375°F for 15 minutes.

Then lower the heat to 350°F and bake until just set in the centre, about 30 to 40 minutes.

Lemon Myrtle

Probably the most popular bush tucker, Lemon Myrtle also known as verbena, sweet verbena. Indigenous people have been using parts of this plant for thousands of years, from sucking on them for hydration, burning the leaves to repel mozzies or making a balm for sores and grazes.

It is the Queen of the lemon herbs, its aroma of citrus and menthol can be used in both Savory and sweet dishes.

Lemon Myrtle Biscuits

Lemon Myrtle Biscuits

Recipe from Taste Australia

Belle loves these super zingy lemon Myrtle Biscuits, I love them as they are simple and easy


250gm sugar 250gm Butter 500gm sifted SR flour 4 eggs 25gm Ground Lemon Myrtle


Cream together sugar and butter add the eggs one at a time, fold in flour and lemon myrtle until combined roll into small balls

Flour fork and press slightly bake in moderate oven (Approx. 180C) for 12 to 15 minutes

Cool and store in an airtight container

Lemon Myrtle Roast Chicken

Lemon Myrtle Roast Chicken

This is such a delicious dish and everyone will ask you for the recipe


1kg Pontiac or Desiree potatoes, peeled, cut into 5cm pieces

1/4 cup (60ml) lemon myrtle-infused or lemon-infused olive oil

2 teaspoons ground lemon myrtle or 2 tablespoons finely grated lemon zest

2 garlic cloves, crushed

4 chicken Maryland’s

2 lemons, cut into wedges

2 lemon myrtle leaves or bay leaves

1 cup (250ml) dry white wine

Flat-leaf parsley sprigs, to serve

Serve with steamed Samphire or fresh garden salad


Preheat oven to 200°C.

Cook potatoes in boiling salted water for 6 minutes or until just tender. Drain well.

Combine the lemon oil, ground lemon myrtle and garlic in a bowl. Set aside.

Place chicken in a roasting pan with potatoes, lemon wedges and lemon myrtle or bay leaves.

Pour over wine and oil mixture, then toss to combine. Season.

Bake for 45 minutes until the chicken and potatoes are golden and cooked through.

Scatter with parsley and serve.


Probably my favorite bush tucker, Samphire is a succulent that grows along rocky escarpments along the whole of the Australian coastline. Great to use as a pesto, salsa Verde, steamed, stir fried or just blanched like green beans. Tastes like asparagus sprinkled with sea salt (bloody delicious!)

This succulent was a main stay in Indigenous diets for thousands of years due to the great taste, high iron content and the natural abundance of this plant.

You can’t go past eating samphire teamed with:

Smoked Trout, Boiled Egg and Samphire

Smoked Trout, Eggs And Samphire

1 smoked whole trout

300 grams steamed samphire

4 boiled egg


Boil and peel eggs

Steam samphire (just steam as you would any other green vegetable)

Place smoked trout on serving tray

Scatter steamed samphire over trout

Quarter eggs and place on trout and samphire


Samphire Pesto

Samphire Pesto


3 cups steamed samphire

2 cloves garlic.

½ cup Parmesan cheese, grated.

Splash of fresh lemon juice, more or less according to your taste buds.

About ½ cup olive oil (or oil of your choice)

Salt and pepper to taste.

½ cup of crushed macadamias


Put all dry ingredients in a food processor and whizz till everything is combined

Add oil to running food processor until you have the right consistency

Add salt, pepper and lemon to taste

Can be refrigerated for 2 weeks

Serve with pasta, fish, potato salad or on a sandwich with left over roast lamb, baked sweet potato and a sharp cheddar cheese. Bloody delicious!


Australian Natives Snowberries

Known as snowberries, waxberries or ghostberry and a part of the honeysuckle family. Grown predominately in Tasmania as they need a cool frosty climate to survive. Eaten by Indigenous people for thousands of years they have come to the attention of world renowned chefs like Peter Gilmore and Jock Zonfrillo.

I have tried to source recipes for the snowberry which has proved hard, what I did find was Renowned Australia Chef, Peter Gilmore suggestions on what he does with them: Macerate them in a cold vanilla sugar syrup, let them infuse in a vacuum-sealed bag, then serve them with milk ice-cream, meringue, and an assortment of other sweet delights.

If you have a recipe for snowberries we would love if you could share.

Warrigal Greens

Warrigal Greens are becoming a staple in many restaurants in Australia and overseas. Chefs like Kylie Kwong, Shannon Bennett and a host of others are using this magical ingredient in many dishes.

What’s not to love about Warrigal greens, they are Australian own spinach, they grow abundantly from seed in just about any part of Australia and they pair well with both with other native bush food and main stream staples.

Warrigal Green Gnocchi with Burnt Butter

Warrigal greens and Ricotta Gnocchi



250g ricotta - ordinary supermarket ricotta, not expensive fresh Italian ricotta

¾ cup freshly grated parmesan cheese

2 cups of steamed chopper Warrigal greens

¾ to 1 cup plain flour, plus a little more for dusting

1 egg + 1 egg yolk

¼ tsp salt

Black pepper

Fresh lemon zest to taste

Browned Butter and Walnut Sauce


4 tbsp. salted butter

Black pepper

Hand full of walnuts


Combine the gnocchi ingredients in a bowl except the flour.

Then add ¾ cup of flour and mix until just combined so it is a sticky very soft dough.

Use the remaining flour, 1 tbsp. at a time to get the dough consistency right. I find ¾ cup is enough.

Turn it out on a work surface lightly dusted with flour, sprinkle a tiny bit of flour on top then pat it down to a disc about 2.5cm thick.

Cut it into 8 pieces.

Roll a piece into a log about 1.5 cm in diameter and about 10"/25cm long. Repeat with remaining dough.

Line 4 logs up, then cut them into 1.5cm pieces. Repeat with remaining 4 logs.

Bring a large pot of water to boil.

Tumble the gnocchi in and cook for around 2½ minutes, or until the gnocchi is floating on the surface for around 30 seconds.

Then drain and add the gnocchi into the frypan with your brown butter and walnut sauce.

Brown Butter

Melt butter in frypan and cook until butter turns light brown

Add pepper and walnuts and mix.

Mix in the gnocchi

Serve with parsley garnish

Warrigal Greens and Potato Dumplings with Tomato Relish

Warrigal Greens and Potato Dumplings

Simple and easy Sunday night dinner


2 cups of cold mashed potato

2 eggs

pinch of salt

cup of chopped and sautéed Warrigal greens

1 ½ cups of plain flour (maybe more, maybe less depending of type of potato used)

4 tbsp. butter

Breadcrumbs to roll them in


Add potato, Warrigal greens, salt and mix well.

Add flour (bit by bit) until it forms a stiff dough, will be a little sticky.

Roll the dough into smaller then a cricket ball but bigger than a squash ball, ball.

In a large saucepan of boiling water place in the dumplings

Gently simmer for 12-13 minutes

While these are cooking melt butter in a pan and add breadcrumbs.

As soon as you take the dumplings out of the water, place in pan and coat with butter and breadcrumb mix.

Serve hot with cold tomato chutney.


Macadamia is probably the best know native tucker. But did you know

  • Americans are the largest consumers of macadamia products

  • Macadamia’s have sex with themselves, they can self-pollinate

  • It takes a macadamia tree between 8 – 12 years to produce nuts

  • Many coffee roasters use the shell to roast specialty coffee

So, what are our favourite macadamia recipes?

Roast Pumpkin, Sweet Potato and Macadamia Dip

Roast Vege and Macadamia Dip


2 cups of roast potato

½ cup of roast sweet potato

1 cup of macadamia

35 ml macadamia oil


Macadamia Rocky Road

Macadamia Rocky Road


200 grams of marshmallows

500 grams’ milk chocolate

¼ cup of desiccated coconut

90 grams’ macadamias

½ cup place cherry if you must (Horrible disgusting things)


In a tray place all ingredients except for chocolate

Melt chocolate either in microwave or double saucepan

Pour chocolate over other ingredients and mix

Put tray in fridge for 1 hour

With a hot knife slice into pieces

Wattle Seed

The nuttiest most delicious flavour comes from these little seeds. Hints of coffee and chocolate flavours makes the wattle seed great to be used in desserts. The Wattle seed has been used by both Aboriginal and Torres Strait islander people for a variety of uses, they used wattle seed as a type of flour that they used to make bread. They used Wattle seeds as a thickener for sauces and for medicinal purposes used the seeds to make a poultice for rheumatism which was then wrapped on the ailing limbs. All parts of the wattle tree were utilised from the roots for tea through to the bark for boomerangs.

At home I use the seed in the before mentioned damper and my all-time favourite dessert, wattle seed pavlova.

Wattle Seed Damper made in a Slow Cooker

Wattle Seed Slow Cooker Damper

I found this recipe (which is so easy from Sarah Wilson’s, I quit sugar recipe book) super easy and super delicious.


200 g rye flour.

200 g white spelt flour (or regular plain white flour).

50 g plain white flour.

2 teaspoons sea salt.

1 tablespoon instant yeast.

300 ml water.

1/4 cup sunflower seeds.

1 1/2 tablespoon wattle seed, ground.

1 tablespoon rice malt syrup.

3 ml extra virgin olive oil.


Place flours, yeast, salt and wattle seed into a large mixing bowl. Mix well. Place a saucepan over low-medium heat. Add in water and rice malt syrup and heat until water is Luke warm (not too hot otherwise it will kill the yeast) and rice malt syrup has dissolved. Pour into the dry mixture. Mix the ingredients together to form a sticky dough. Tip bread onto a floured board or work surface. Knead by hand for 4–5 minutes. Lightly oil the mixing bowl and place the dough inside. Cover with a tea towel and place into a warm place for 1 hour until dough doubles in size. Place the dough back onto a floured work surface and knead briefly, incorporating sunflower seeds as you go. Shape bread into a round. Place baking paper into the slow cooker insert, flattening the paper as much as possible against the sides of the insert. Add in the dough. Cook on high for 1 1/2 hours (all slow cookers are different, so you may need up to another 30 minutes cooking time). If you want to darken the top of your loaf, place until the grill or broiler for 5 minutes until golden brown.

Wattle Seed Pavlova

Wattle Seed Pavlova

I have saved the best till last, wattle seed pavlova is the best dessert you will ever eat if you like flavours such as coffee, hazelnut and chocolate.

My mum who was one of the best cooks ever always used the pavlova recipe from the Commonsense cookbook, as do I as it never fails, I have adapted this recipe to include the wattle seed.


6 egg whites, at room temperature

315g (1 1/2 cups) caster sugar

3 teaspoons corn flour

2 teaspoons white vinegar

2 tbsp. of wattle seed steeped in 2 tbsp. of boiling water

1 teaspoon vanilla essence

375ml (1 1/2 cups) thickened cream

125 grams of good chocolate

crushed hazelnuts


Preheat oven to 160c

In a clean bowl, whisk the egg whites till stiff peaks form

Gently add in castor sugar one spoonful at a time, whisking as you go

When you have, stiff glossy peaks add the teaspoons of corn flour, 2 teaspoons of the wattle seed water (you will be using the leftover for the cream) and vinegar and fold through gently

Place the mixture onto a lined tray and spread into a circle

Place in center of the oven for 20-30mins depending on whether you like crisp meringue or crisp on outside, gooey in the middle.

Turn off oven and leave until cool

Whip fresh cream

Add the left-over wattle seed water and fold through

Remove pavlova from oven and pace on a serving dish

Add the whipped wattle seed cream over the pavlova

Melt the chocolate

Drizzle chocolate over the top of the pavlova

With the crushed nuts scatter over the top of the finished dish

Refrigerate until ready to serve

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