Culture //

The City-Dweller’s Guide to Bush Tucker

Jasmin Herro is a descendent of the Torres Strait Islands who is currently in her third year, studying in the Faculty of Agriculture. She finds that through a shared love of food, non-Indigenous people may develop a connection to country and Indigenous cultures.

Whether you’ve cooked with more common bush foods or you’re a total novice, there’s something special about the array of Australia’s native foods! You don’t have to be a connoisseur to appreciate some of the excellent bush tucker that generations of Australia’s first people have enjoyed for thousands of years. Here are a few homegrown delicacies to satisfy your palate and help connect you to country…

Wild Raspberry
These delicious red berries grow on short, spiky canes. They’re similar to what you find at grocery stores, only bigger and more tart. The leaves can be brewed into a rose-colored tea, and studies suggest this tea may have benefits for female reproductive health.

Pig Face
Despite its name, pig face is one of the tastiest fruits the bush has to offer. It grows on a succulent plant and is a quick source of fluid when out on a bush walk. This fruit is ripe when purple and appears similar to a large olive with two ears, hence the name.

Davidson Plum
These dark plums look and taste much like regular plums, but, the flesh is very tart and the skin can be quite acidic, making it a perfect fruit for making jams. It’s also great as a cordial – just ensure you don’t spill it, as the colour can stain and the residue is extremely sticky.

While it’s definitely worth stepping out of your comfort zone and giving bush tucker a try, take caution when picking and eating foods in the bush. Never eat anything unless you have reliable advice on what it is you’re about to eat.