Barbeques, or BBQs, are a quintessential Australian activity - particularly during the summer months. It might be a cliche, but many people revel in 'throwing a snag on the barbie'.
Australia Plus asked the people we profiled to imagine that if they had the chance to host a barbeque — anywhere in Australia — what three Australian guests (dead or alive) would they invite and what would be on the menu? Anupam Sharma is an Australian of Indian heritage who directs and produces films - including unINDIAN, which starred former Australian test cricketer Brett Lee.
“Paul Hogan [Australian actor] — for his sense of humour and tongue-in-cheek look at life. Baz Luhrmann [Australian director and producer]. I was honoured to be advising him in a small way when he did
Moulin Rouge. The way that he and his wife, Catherine Martin work — in terms of their attention to detail, the glamour, the glitz — is so close to India. And Julian Burnside [Australian lawyer and human rights activist] — for his undying attention and work for the unprivileged.
I’d hold the barbeque at a local council park where you put $2 into the barbeque and it lights up. I’d have lamb chops and tandoori chicken, Indian naan bread, bread rolls, lamingtons, and Indian dessert,
gulab jamun. It’d be a way to share the two countries.” Gronya Somerville is an Australian badminton player and the great-great-granddaughter of influential Chinese revolutionary, Kang Youwei.
“Anna Meares, the athlete [and Olympic cyclist]. And a comedian, for entertainment - Hamish Blake. And Waleed Aly [journalist and broadcaster] - I think he’d be really insightful.
I’d have seafood, honey soaked chicken wings and burgers.
In Perth - near a beach, so that we can see the sunset there. We had some tournaments in Perth and I just really liked the sunsets on the beaches.”
Kevin WY Lee is a photographer, curator and founder of Invisible Photographer Asia, an online platform for photography and the arts in Asia. He studied design in Sydney.
“Aside from my Australian friends, I’d invite the singer Sia, photographers Trent Parke and his wife Narelle Autio (I’ll count them as one), and Philip Cozis, who gave me my first real job at his little ad agency in Ultimo [Sydney].
There’d be lamb chops, prawns and onions on one grill. On the other grill, there’d be Korean BBQ beef. Korean BBQ is actually really good in Australia.
It’d be held on the highest peak at Mount Perisher. I went there on my first ski trip and I didn’t know how to ski. My friends dumped me on the highest peak. I stood frozen still for over an hour before deciding to roll all the way down.”
Manika Kaur is an Australian-born Sikh kirtan singer, based in Dubai, who donates all the proceeds from her album sales and concert tickets to charity.
“I would love to do it at the Blackburn Sikh Temple [in Melbourne]. We would cook a delicious vegetarian meal of paneer kebabs, naan, parathas, Indian spiced vegetable skewers and of course daal!
I would invite
L-FRESH The LION. I would want to talk to him about doing a spiritual rap on my new album. I would invite Sukhjit Kaur Khalsa and tell her that she's amazing and to keep it up! Finally I would invite Pauline Hanson [Australian politician]. Together at this beautiful Sikh Temple we can show Pauline Hanson that we are all one and that her message should be one of unity. We could remind her that her family migrated to Australia and people are more than the colour of their skin. Maybe we can create the 'One Nation' we want in Australia by trying to understand one another instead of blaming and dehumanising groups of people.” Nadirsyah Hosen is an Indonesian-born legal academic in Monash University's Faculty of Law.
“I would want to invite [Australian politicians] Pauline Hanson, Cory Bernardi and Tony Abbott to my home. I would host a halal barbeque for them. They could bring their own beer, if they wished, and we could talk about what makes them so worried about Muslims in Australia. I am sure I could be a bridge between Muslims and the Government here. We need to have more open and honest dialogue.”
Eveline is a Sydney-based macaron artist, cake decorator and baker who picked up her lifelong hobby of baking when she moved to Australia.
“First of all, it will be Hugh Jackman, Kay Cottee [Australian sailor], and Steve Irvin [Australian television presenter and conservationist]. I would like to have it in my backyard at home. On the menu would be Aussie angus beef and ox-tongue!”
Adam Poskitt and Susan Natalia were born in Australia and Indonesia, respectively. The couple are a pair of travel bloggers and writers, who quit their jobs to travel full-time.
“Mark Viduka. I was never good at sports, but always liked to imagine myself in a soccer game with the Australian team. My favourite Aussie soccer player is Mark Viduka.”
“George Calombaris. I really love MasterChef Australia. George Calombaris is my favourite chef.”
“Eddie Mabo [Indigenous Australian land rights activist] . As an Australian, I’m ashamed that I don’t know anything about the nation’s first people. I’d like to ask the late Eddie Mabo about his views on Australia today, how to help improve the lives of indigenous Australians and about his connection to his land.
The menu would have to have a Greek edge to it: we’d be asking George to cook up a lamb and some salads. We’d ask Eddie to bring some traditional tucker. To cater for Mark Viduka, we’d fire up some
rakija [Eastern European alcohol] to wash down the food.
The best place to have an Aussie barbie is either in your backyard or next to a famous waterway. With that said, we’d choose Kirribilli House. It’s right on the edge of Sydney Harbour and it’s the official Sydney-based residence of the Prime Minister.”
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