At Mt Barney Lodge, bushtucker foods are in abundance. From sandpaper figs to warrigal greens, our gardens are full to the brim with native foods, bursting in flavour and texture.
Bushfoods make up 20 per cent of Australia’s native flora and fauna and the delicacies are in hot demand from many restaurants and cafes around the country.
Of all the delicious bushtucker foods, one of our favourites is the Carpobrotus glaucescens, otherwise known as pigface. Despite its name, the pigface plant produces a beautiful, succulent fruit, and tastes similar to kiwi-fruit.
The Greek origins of the work Carpobrotus translates to ‘edible fruit’ and the plant grows in abundance on the coastal sand dunes on Eastern Australia.
Onsite at the Lodge we have established some pigface plants, which Tracey propagated from the sand dunes of Brooms Head NSW (we have also seen them on Moreton Island, but of course have not taken any from the National Park😊 ). They are surprisingly hardy and tolerate our clay soil and hot unrelenting summers well. They give plenty of warning when they are water-stressed, without suddenly keeling over like other native and introduced species.
Below we have some mouth-watering recipes for you to try out at home.
¼ cup sugar
Peel of ½ lemon
1 teaspoon whole cumin seeds
2 endive, outer, thinly sliced
1 small bunch pigface, thinly sliced
Place water, vinegar, sugar, lemon zest pieces, whole cumin seeds and salt in a saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Place the sliced endive and pigface in a bowl. Pour pickling liquid over the vegetables and set aside to cool. Once cooled, drain vegetables and remove zest pieces.
Pigface Jam Recipe
2 cups of pigface pulp
1 cup of sugar
3 cups of water
Method Preheat oven to 180 degrees C. Place a jar upside down in the oven to sterilise for 10 minutes. Separately boil water in a pot. Add sugar and pigface pulp to the boiling water. Stir until the mixture thickens and bubbles appear. Strain, and pour the mixture into the jar. Put the jar in the fridge until the jam sets.
Please ask us next time you visit Mt Barney Lodge to see where the pigface is growing, or just keep an eye out on coastal sanddune for an edible treat!