Strine Tucker

Savorin’ Straya

Aussie beef and lamb provided a meating (sic) of minds in central Tokyo today at the surprisingly enjoyable Aussie Meat Festival .

Dragged along by Mrs. Kangaeroo, who loves a good chunk of steak and is not averse to lamb either, the celebration of Australian beef, lamb and other fare turned out to be a ripper.

Not normally a great meat eater (simply because I don’t really like the taste), the day turned out to be a feast for all the senses, and not just the taste buds.

Walking up to the site, the mouthwatering fragrance of roasting lamb wafted through the air and immediately got my gastric juices flowing in anticipation.

Mrs. Kangaeroo opted to have a sample dish of three different types of steak and sauces, while I went for some curried lamb snags. They were all scrumptious.

There were about a dozen stalls selling different types of beef or lamb dishes, or alternatively plugging Aussie products or practices. The majority of the operators were lambassadors.

There was a stall selling 4’n’20 pies and I was gonna give it a miss, but accidentally bumped into the wonderful Lily Takegasa, the Sales Lead for Patties, which sells the pies in Japan. Lily had helped me get pies supplied at the local Gyomu Super supermarket last year, for which I am eternally grateful. She turned out to be a wonderfully friendly, helpful and kind person, which came as no surprise as she had been precisely that when we communicated a year ago.

Probably the highlight of the day was getting a steak cooking class given by the affable and enchanting Ken Tanaka, proprietor of the outdoor event organizer, TEAM OUTSIDE.

Ken advised letting a steak air until reaching room temperature, liberally sprinkling it with salt and black pepper, then chucking it on the barbie. He recommended frying one side until it started to perspire, then flipping it, adding more seasoning and keeping it in the pan until it achieved the desired degree of frying. Instead of merely eating the steak, he told us to wrap it in alfoil and keep it wrapped up for as long as it had been in the frypan. We did! And it was simply sublime! I almost never eat beef, but couldn’t stop hoeing into this steak until it was gone. Looking around the rest of the class, I noticed it had a similar effect on everyone else, too. The TEAM OUTSIDE special spice was a tangy delight that drew out the flavor of the steak to provide a taste that transcended being merely delicious.

Ken Tanaka provided a steak cooking masterclass

Among the other stall operators that made an impression with me were Currydashi, which made the exquisite lamb sausages; Ironbark, a grill & bar operating in the prestigious Ginza 6; Longfellows, a purveyor of Tasmanian mustard (which worked with amazing effect on an Angus beef 4’n’20), honey, wine and craft gin; and zenta coffee, a Sydney-style coffee shop.

We really had an amazing day, which was incredible as I’m fucked. I’m in a really bad rut, got another huge pay cut yesterday and was absolutely humiliated by my bosses. It was uplifting to get out and get into the tucker, and it looked like plenty of people were enjoying it, too.

Meat Gallery

Ken Tanaka’s Steak Cooking Masterclass

Festival Feeling