Wild rosemary crusted kangaroo, fig & lilly pilly

Wild rosemary crusted kangaroo, fig & lilly pilly

I’ve decided to revisit the good old kangaroo. I used it previously in a Japanese recipe, so this time around I thought I’d make it a little more Aussie. When I was down visiting Kangaroo Island I not only learned about a beautiful part of the country, but a particular native plant, or herb, was brought to my attention. Olearia axillaris. A shrub that’s commonly known as Coastal Daisybush or Wild Rosemary.

You see, way before the Brits dugg the Union Jack into Botany Bay’s terra firma, the rescue crew of Willem de Vlamingh’s expedition was already sampling some of the native herbage to enhance the flavours in some of their provisions. These Dutch fellows were out here to rescue potential survivors of the Ridderschap van Holland that went missing two years prior in 1694. They may not have realised it then, but when they were anchored at Rottnest Island, they happened to be the first Europeans to use wild rosemary in cooking.

Olearia axillaris on Kangaroo Island

Wild rosemary grows pretty much from the mid-Western Australian coast, all the way to Sydney. Much of the Tasmanian coastline is home to it as well. It’s a shrub that likes the sandy coastline and salty air. It grows up to two metres in height and looks and smells very much like your regular rosemary, but with notes of pine as well.

I thought the herb would work nicely with red meat, so I’ve used it with kangaroo. Due to its strong flavour, I mixed in some parsley. To add some sweetness to the dish, something kangaroo meat likes, I made a quick chutney with fresh lilly pillies from my neighbourhood trees and some figs. A bit of roasted and caramelised garlic helped it along as well. I say a bit, not the huge amount you can see in the photo’s!

Wild rosemary kangaroo, fig & lilly pilly chutney recipe

Wild rosemary kangaroo, fig & lilly pilly chutney recipe

Wild rosemary kangaroo, fig & lilly pilly chutney recipe

 

 

Print Recipe
Wild rosemary crusted kangaroo, fig & lilly pilly
Kangaroo, lilly pilles and wild rosemary. A celebration of our native ingredients
Wild rosemary kangaroo, fig & lilly pilly chutney Olearia axillaris
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Fig & lilly pilly chutney
The roo
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Fig & lilly pilly chutney
The roo
Wild rosemary kangaroo, fig & lilly pilly chutney Olearia axillaris
Instructions
Fig & lilly pilly chutney
  1. Heat the oil in a small saucepan over low heat, add the onion and sauté until soft. Add the lilly pillies and figs, balsamic and jaggery. Cook gently over low heat, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes. Set aside to cool.
The roo
  1. Combine the wild rosemary, parsley, salt and pepper. Scatter evenly over a wooden board, then roll the kangaroo meat over it to coat all sides. Set aside.
  2. Heat a griddle, barbecue or non-stick pan over medium-high heat. Drizzle the oil over the surface, then place the herb-crusted kangaroo into the pan. Cook the kangaroo on all sides for 4-5 minutes, making sure it is still medium-rare to rare on the inside. Remove from the pan and allow to rest for 5 minutes before slicing.
  3. Serve with the roasted garlic, chutney and any other vegetable you desire.
Recipe Notes

Get my recipe for roasted garlic here.

If you're going out foraging be 100% certain that what you're picking is edible. When in doubt, don't pick it - or consult an expert.

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  • caroline

    Sorry to those who can’t source lilly pilly, it has a unique and beautiful flavour. I never thought of pairing it with meat. My tree is flush with fruit right now ( I made some jam on the weekend) so I will have to get cracking on this one and scrounge some fresh figs too. Roasted garlic yum!!!

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