Our Big Bird and Australia’s first cook book

In early colonial Australia, printed cookbooks were an indulgence, offering little useful information for Australian conditions, and often requiring unobtainable ingredients. Our first cookbook was written in 1864 by Hobart landowner and member of the Tasmanian Parliament Edward Abbott (1801–1869). Wait for the title, The English and Australian Cookery Book: Cookery for the Many, as [...]

By | July 12th, 2016|A WRITERS LIFE, COUNTRY LIFE, General|0 Comments

Iconic Australian Bush Artists – Pro Hart

Iconic Australian artists. The phrase makes me think of idyllic portrayals of pastoralism, of golden fleeces suffused with sunlight, frontier settlers framed by eucalypt trees and the blue haze of a never-ending landscape. There are also the confronting depictions rendered by more contemporary artists. Of men and women, communities and their profound connection to the [...]

By | July 5th, 2016|COUNTRY LIFE, General, Inspiration|0 Comments

Eating our national emblem, Skippy.

Considering we’re not averse to chomping down on a nice piece of spring lamb or Bambi, if you’re a venison lover, it’s surprising how many people don’t like the idea of eating kangaroo or emu. Meat is meat after all, isn’t it? And if it isn’t, then what makes skippy and our own version of [...]

By | July 4th, 2016|COUNTRY LIFE, General, MOTHER NATURE, Opinion|0 Comments

There’s money in dogs.

The Casterton Kelpie Association has been holding the Clark Rubber Australian Kelpie Muster in Casterton, VIC for 20 years.  Over that period it has certainly become an iconic event with people travelling from all over Australia to buy or sell their working dogs at what is the Premier Working Dog Auction in Australia.  Held over [...]

By | June 20th, 2016|COUNTRY LIFE, General, Inspiration, Rural Affairs|0 Comments

Barnaby, Boat people and Depps’ Boo

Did the temporary ban on live cattle exports to Indonesia really lead to an increase in boat people arriving in Australia? So says Barnaby Joyce. Five years ago the uproar over footage filmed at an Indonesian abattoir led to the Labor government banning live cattle exports. It was a temporary measure to address the horror [...]

Steak anyone?

I love steak, particularly T-bone, preferably grass fed, not the mushy tasteless grain fed variety currently featuring on the shelves at Coles. But as a consumer and a producer I’m in the hands of the ‘Big 5’, the giants who control the red meat processing industry, Woolworths, Coles, JBS Australia, Teys/Cargill and Nippon. You’d think [...]

By | May 23rd, 2016|COUNTRY LIFE, Opinion, Rural Affairs|0 Comments

Coffee-break Quick-Pick: The Hands: A Pastoral

In Stephen Orr’s The Hands: A Pastoral, a cattle property in the middle of the desert has been in the family for generations. But life on the farm has been hard for a long time. The drought is decimating the cattle herd and the stress of living and working on a property that it is [...]

By | May 18th, 2016|COUNTRY LIFE|0 Comments

Skippy in the Spotlight.

Spotting the kamikaze kangaroo waiting roadside before it makes a dash across the path of an unsuspecting driver should be a national sport. In the north and north-west of NSW kangaroos are making an impact. A big impact. Growers fortunate to have crops in the ground are talking of plague-like numbers decimating their fields. Then [...]

By | May 9th, 2016|COUNTRY LIFE, Rural Affairs|0 Comments

The Dog Blog: Jack the kelpie & the great escape puppies

I never pictured myself in the security industry. Not that I’m not tough. No siree! I can bark at and scruff an opponent as good as the next. In fact in my younger days I could run down a wily cow in five seconds flat and I don’t have an issue putting my paw on [...]

By | September 18th, 2015|COUNTRY LIFE, MOTHER NATURE|0 Comments

Blade Shearing 1894: From the station archives.

The first shearing on our property took place in 1894, when the merino’s that had been overlanded from another of our properties near Inverell, in northern NSW were shorn. This photograph shows that first blade shearing.       Originally a small black and white picture, it was enlarged and tinted with colour many years ago, [...]

By | September 1st, 2015|COUNTRY LIFE, Inspiration|2 Comments
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