Gourmet Glen tucking into bush treats
By UTE SCHULENBERG
FINE cuisine, alfresco dining ... it's all part of the gourmet experience at Yarrawarra's Yuraal Cafe.
Chef Glen Brown, who grew up in Corindi, has placed the bush tucker ingredients and flavours of his childhood at the centre of his creative indigenous menu.
"We always used these ingredients but now I've dressed them in a mainstream way," Glen said.
"The response has been unbelievable."
Glen started the kitchen at Yarrawarra Aboriginal Cultural Centre 13 years ago, when he was still completing his apprenticeship.
"Back then I only had one hotplate. The kitchen has evolved since then and when I came home recently it was vacant like it was waiting for me.
"Now I'm doing what I love most in my own Gumbaynggirr country."
Signature dishes include his baked kangaroo with wild honey and pepperberry/mustard glaze or his curry seafood chowder with snapper and king prawns in a mango/coconut curry.
Vegetarian alternatives also feature on the menu.
His native spinach cannelloni using warrigal spinach and ricotta is a hit, as is his lemon myrtle vegetable medley.
"The lemon myrtle is grown locally, just down the road from here. We harvest the leaves once a month, dry them and grind them into a powder."
These delicious dishes are part of the cafe's new Friday night smorgasbord menu.
"We've just started opening on Friday nights and so far the response has been great. People of all ages are coming here and connecting over some good food. It's real grass roots reconciliation."
Yuraal Cafe is open Wed-Sun, 10am to 4pm and on Friday nights. For bookings phone 6649 2651.