We’ve been enjoying their unique and sustainable range of native foods in restaurants for years – now we can cook with Outback Pride Fresh products at home!
For more years than they care to remember, Mike and Gayle Quarmby of Outback Pride Fresh have been producing a diverse range of premium, fresh, native food. Some of it is produced in 32 hot houses on their property in Reedy Creek on the Limestone Coast, and the rest comes from joint ventures with over 20 Aboriginal communities in South Australia and the Northern Territory.
When Mike and Gayle first launched their unique range of native food products into a major Australian supermarket chain back in 2002 it unfortunately became apparent that they were a little premature. When it comes to food security and eating locally, it doesn’t get more local than our own, ancient foods, but Australian kitchens weren’t quite ready for this range of delicious, sustainable indigenous food products back then.
It took multiple Australian chefs and a television show to change all of that, in a very big way, some years later.
The demand for high-quality, fresh native products in Australian restaurants has been growing for many years and Outback Pride Fresh have been supplying hundreds of Australia’s best chefs and restaurants with their premium products.
In 2015, on the television cooking show Masterchef, co-host Matt Preston sang the praises of these sustainably produced, nutrient-dense and intensely flavourful foods long and loud, declaring that all Australians should be making the most of them in their daily cooking.
However, Gayle was thrilled to see that by the time the current series screened there was no fuss or hoo-ha about the foods, “ they were just passed out to the contestants as part of the normal range of cooking products. Finally, Australian native foods were being seen as accepted, mainstream ingredients”, she said.
Now the rest of us can get in on the act – Outback pride Fresh has launched a generous selection of fresh native foods, in convenient punnet packs, in the Frewville and Pasadena Foodland stores. Check out the fresh food fridges for take home packs of barilla, warrigal, karkalla, crunchy ice plant, samphire, native basil, thyme and river mint and the incredible saltbush.
Far from being a slightly exotic addition to our plates, saltbush should be a part of everyone’s sustainable diet. Did you know that saltbush production uses 1/3 less water than used for other vegetables? Did you know that this ‘superfood’ is actually 21% protein and very high in calcium, zinc and magnesium? Why on earth wouldn’t we be eating it regularly?
Unlike the ordinary greens you might be used to using in the kitchen, these products are in fact ancient plants and not breed for a long shelf-life, so need to be used as fresh as possible. If you find yourself left with leftovers, don’t let them languish in the fridge – get creative with them, make a pesto or a sauce to freeze. Just don’t waste them!
Check out the full range in either of the above Foodland stores. Download a sampler of free recipes from the Outback Pride Fresh website, check out the product page where each image links to information on the plant and culinary uses for it, and start adding these astonishing ancient and totally sustainable foods to your cooking routine.