So you can imagine my delight when I discovered witchetty grubs in my garden last spring. Much to my teenage son’s combined disgust and awe, I promptly washed the plump creatures with the ugly brown heads and tossed them into a hot frying pan. You know how they say everything tastes like chicken, well once I forced myself to actually eat them, I can confirm that they do taste like chicken, but with a little nutty overtone. It was the tough skin and chewy texture that wasn’t so pleasant.
When I wrote ‘Lost in Kakadu’ I tried everything possible to ensure my descriptions were as real as possible…short of living through a plane crash that is...that scene is purely fiction.
Mackenzie Steel, my hero in ‘Lost in Kakadu’ is a five star chef who is tortured by the limitations of cooking in the jungle he’s crashed into. So I’ve given him a chance to share one of his favourite recipes with you.
Sticky date pudding with caramel sauce
250g seeded dates
1¼ cup boiling water
1 cup self raising flour
¾ cup firmly packed
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
300 ml cream
1. Put dates, water and soda in a blender, put lid on and let stand for 5 minutes.
2. Add brown sugar and chopped butter and process until dates are roughly chopped
3. Add eggs and flour and mix until just combined.
4. Pour into a greased and lined round tin.
5. Bake for 50-55 minutes in a moderate oven, turning once during cooking
6. Turn onto a plate to serve.
7. To make sauce: Place sugar, butter and cream in a saucepan and stir continually until butter is melted and sauce begins to boil and thicken.
8. To serve: slice a portion of cake, drizzle with caramel sauce and top with vanilla ice
'Lost in Kakadu' will be available to purchase by e-book on 1st of August 2013.