Oxford Symposium on Food and Cookery, Oxford U.K., 8–10 July, 2011

The Aussie barbecue is a unique celebratory institution. From humble beginnings, with meat cooked on a ploughshare over an outback campfire, or on a shovel in the firebox of a steam locomotive, the Aussie barbecue has now reached iconic status. It forms the focus of many of our national and personal celebrations. To give just one example, the 2009 award of “Australian of the Year” at the National Parliament House in Canberra on Australia Day was accompanied by a barbeque for some 650 invited VIPs where “chefs manned barbeques cooking Australian produce – beef, lamb, chicken, seafood and vegetables.” According to organizer Nicole Lieschke, the 2010 award ceremony followed a similar pattern, with 8 chefs manfully manning four giant barbecues. Even more impressively, the Queen was farewelled from her 2011 visit to Australia with a giant barbecue attended by over 100,000 people, where more than 600 volunteers cooked over 130,000 sausages, with celebrity chefs contributing their own barbecued dishes for the royal visitors…(full text will appear in the published proceedings).

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