About Oz Tukka SpicesAustralian native spices are very unique. The flavours are very subtle but distinctive and complement each other in cooking.
The spices are suitable for both sweet and savoury cooking and work well with most cooking styles. Australian native spices are a new addition of flavours to the world kitchen and a way to experience a taste of Australia.
Australian native plants have been used for thousands of years by Aboriginal people for a wide range of uses including medicinal purposes or as staple foods. With the recent rediscovery of the flavours of the Australian hot dry deserts and lush rainforests, the native plants have found their way into the modern kitchen for everybody to enjoy. The spices are not commonly available and mostly collected from the wild. This also means they are grown without the use of chemicals and have been gently hand harvested.
The bush tomato and wattle seed are traditional staple foods collected in Central Australia by the local aboriginal communities. The industry gives new incentives for traditional land management and opportunities to pass valuable knowledge from the older to the younger generation. It is mostly older women that collect the fruits and seeds in the company of grandchildren.
Lemon MyrtleLemon myrtle (Backhousia Citriodora) is a medium size tree found in the coastal rainforests of North Eastern Australia. The leaves from the lemon myrtle tree are characterised by their strong lemon aroma. They contain essential oil with the world’s highest known concentration of citral (around 90-98%).
Lemon myrtle is fast becoming famous for its incredible flavour. Demand for the leaves has paved the way for commercial production in Northern NSW and Queensland.
Mountain PepperMountain pepper (Tasmannia Lanceolata) is a small tree growing to around 5 metres and is found in South Eastern New South Wales, Victoria and Tasmania.
Both the leaves and berries contain a compound called polygodial which gives them their characteristis hot taste. Most of the production of mountain pepper is from wild harvesting however commercial plantations are now emerging to keep up with demand.
Bush TomatoBush Tomato (Solanum Centrale) is a small shrub found in Central and Eastern Australia. A relative of the tomato and potato, this plant is a perennial and like many other Australian plants, thrives after bushfires. The fruit is left on the bush to dry before picking.
The aboriginal tribes of Central and Eastern Australia have gathered these dried fruits for thousands of years relying on them as a staple food. Now used as a spice, most of the production is from wild harvesting by Aboriginal communities, though some commercial plantations are now emerging.
Wattle SeedThere are over 700 species of wattle in Australia however only a few are considered edible. The Australian Aboriginals have been using wattle seed for thousands of years as a staple food source but these days it is more commonly used as a spice when roasted and ground.
The production of wattle seed is from wild harvesting by aboriginal communities.
Native MintNative mint (prostanthera incisa) is a medium shrub native to North Eastern New South Wales, Australia.
Commonly grown as an ornamental garden plant with edible mauve coloured flowers, the leaves are now becoming popular as a cooking herb.
Macadamia Nut OilMacadamia nut oil is the oil from the Australian native macadamia nut. A tree nut native to the Northern New South Wales and Southern Queensland coastal region. Macadamia nut oil is a healthy alternative to other food oils with its high levels of monounsaturates. In fact higher in monounsaturates than olive oil.
Oz Tukka macadamia nut oil is cold pressed, meaning it is the pure oil that comes out of the nut from pressing it without the aid of heat, chemicals or other additives. Because there is no excessive processing involved in the production, there is no presence of trans fatty acids either (unsaturated fat "acting" like saturated fat).
It has high levels of monounsaturates (80-85%), it contains no cholesterol and has high levels of natural antioxidants. Oxidation of fats in the bloodstream increases the risk of heart attack or stroke. It has relative high levels of Palmitoleic Acid (17%) which is said to have a positive affect on cancer and tumours.
Numerous studies have shown that monounsaturated fats can assist in lowering bad cholesterol (LDL) and increase good cholesterol (HDL). For further information on health benefits go to www.australian-macadamias.org.