All posts by The Editor

The iconic super charged Australian Boab

Adansonia gregorii – the Australian Boab

One of 3000 Boab trees in the Kimberley

A stark leafless tree during the dry season, brilliant green during the wet season, it is held in high regard by the Aborigines of the Kimberley Region who call it Larrkardiy.

There are 3000-odd boab trees that are dotted around the Kimberley region with one at Derby listed as 1500 years old. The trees have been providing shelter, food and medicine for our First Nations people for thousands of years.

Boab nut season runs from March to October and is a valuable source of medicinal ingredients. The high vitamin C and calcium content of young leaves and especially the seed-pod pith, makes it a valued commodity. The bark is also used to treat fever, as it contains properties similar to quinine.

Inside the hard case of a boab nut, there is a creamy-white fruit in which the seeds are nestled. This dry powdery fruit pulp, with its tangy citrus flavour, has six times more vitamin C than oranges, and twice as much calcium as milk. It is also rich in other vitamins (A, B1, B2, B6, and PP), minerals (phosphorus, iron, sodium, zinc, magnesium and potassium), dietary fibre (soluble and insoluble) and amino acids*.

Boab Powder, high in vitamins, iron, zinc, protein, potassium, calcium and dietary fibre, is 100% Western Australian boab.

Take two teaspoons of Boab Powder:

  • SPRINKLE… onto fruit, cereal, yoghurt & pancakes
  • BAKE… into bread, brownies, cakes & cookies
  • STIR… into porridge, desserts, soups, hot water & lemon
  • SHAKE… into water, fruit juice, coconut water & salad dressings
  • BLEND… into sauces, milkshakes, smoothies & ice creams

Available for purchase HERE

My Bush Food Kitchen

I first started experimenting with ingredients native to Australia in 1997 but it wasn’t until around 10 years later after a chance meeting with Mike and Gayle Quarmby , creators of Outback Pride, at the Adelaide Showgrounds that I recognised an opportunity to promote and market our unique foods.
“All we need to do now is to get people to eat this stuff” Gayle told me. It was a lightbulb moment.

MY BUSH FOOD KITCHEN


Taste Australia Bush Food Shop started by stocking the products that Outback Pride had developed thus far.
They included jams, sauces, cordials and seasoning mixes. It evolved into the largest range of dried ingredients I could source and with it came much experimentation in the kitchen. Today we have over 40 different ingredients plus a wide range of value added products.


As Co-Vid19 altered our lifestyles I decided to take advantage and document my culinary creations. It was tricky to remember to write them down because I incorporate native ingredients without thinking about it.

CLICK HERE FOR the first edition of MY Bush Food Kitchen- a free downloadable PDF

Dog’s Balls

 A low-lying shrub with broad, velvety leaves, now known as the Grewia savannicola is about to find its way to the Aussie table. The fruit generally has two seeds that are fused together side by side, covered in soft hairs, that hang down on a short stalk.

The bush, found across northern Australia and first discovered by Europeans near the Endeavour River in far north Queensland, has long been used by Indigenous people to treat dysentery and diarrhoea.

Drop a handful of fruit in 500ml water, boil for 10 minutes, strain and drink. A delicious brew.

Available soon at Taste Australia Bush Food Shop

The beauty of fermented rice water

Rice water has amazing hair benefits. A Chemist’s study found that applying rice water on hair can reduce friction between the hair strands as well as improve hair elasticity. Rice water has a carbohydrate called inositol which help can repair damaged hair.

Rinsing or washing your hair with rice water will decrease breakage and make hair more manageable and healthier: the amino acids in the rice water strengthen the hair at its root to promote stronger, thicker new growth.

Rice water has many skin applications as well because of its cooling and soothing effects on the skin, it is an effective ointment to cool off the inflamed skin.

Rice water is loaded with antioxidants in it which help to prevent or fade age-spots, ease skin irritations and give you soft, glowing, clear skin. By leaving it on the skin, it is said to offer mild protection from the sun.

Fermented rice water is rice water that is left to ferment and has gone slightly sour. It is rich in antioxidants, minerals, B vitamins, vitamin E, and traces of pitera, a substance produced during the fermentation process.

You can use fermented rice water as a face cleanser or a skin toner. The nutrients in the fermented rice water can help shrink pores, reduce fine lines, and tighten and brighten your skin – this is a perfect recipe to look radiant and youthful.

Fermentation lowers the pH of the liquid, and this is similar to our hair’s pH, which is also on the lower side (slightly acidic). So, this slightly acidic pH plus the added nutrients from the fermentation process help restore hair’s pH balance, nourish hair follicles and improve the overall condition of hair.

To make rice water rinse half a cup of rice in a cup of water then, place the rice in a bowl and cover with 2 cups of water. Let it soak for 15 to 30 minutes. Swirl it around or lightly knead it until the water turns cloudy. This will help the vitamins and minerals seep into the water, creating a nourishing rinse for your hair and skin.

Now strain out the rice water into a clean bowl. Your rice water is ready to use.

To make Fermented Rice Water
Prepare as above and then leave it at room temperature for a day or until it turns slightly sour (it has started to ferment). It can take anywhere from 24 to 48 hours, depending on how warm it is. So the warmer the room temperature the faster the fermentation process.

Fermented rice water is quite potent, so you may need to dilute it with a cup or two of warm water before use. Adjust according to your hair’s needs, use more for dry hair and less for oily hair.

Jessicurl Trial Packs

Jessicurl Trial Packs allow you to try the products suggested for your hair type. They include a step-by-step instructional insert with tons of tips and techniques to help you get fabulous curl enhancement and definition and help you figure out the best techniques for frizz free curls.

Jessicurl Light and Luminous contains 6 products best suited for finer curls which have a tendency to get weighed down.

Jessicurl Rich and Radiant contains 6 products best suited for thicker, drier hair that is looking for curl enhancement and moisture.

JESSICURL Confidence contains 4 products best suited for coarse, kinky hair.

JessicurlAustralia.com

Wild Pepper & White Kunzea

Wild Pepper and White Kunzea Sea Salt 

We’ve blended the sweet citrusy eucalypt flavour of White Kunzea with  Mountain Pepper from Tasmania’s rainforests and Sea Salt from the pristine waters off the island’s east coast

Particularly nice as a rub on boneless roast lamb or sprinkled over sweet ripe tomatoes and smashed avocado on toast.

White Kunzea is a lovely sweet (almost honey like) fragrant tiny leaf with hints of eucalypt and citrus, makes a great tea, and many uses as an infusion

Ingredients: Sea Salt, Mountain Pepper and White Kunzea

Discover Australia Through Her Food

Like many lands, Australia is a multi-cultural society enjoying food from varying cultures but until recent times our very own naturally occurring foods have been overlooked. Although much of this continent looks barren and infertile, there is an abundance of food and this collection of seasonings aims to bring attention to some of the ingredients endemic to our Pacific Ocean home.

  • Bush Tomato Seasoning is perfect for pizzas, pasta, salsa, sauces, seafood, vegetables and casseroles.  It can be used in many dishes where a dash of spicy tomato is required. It has the right amount of bush tomato to balance the bitterness of bush tomato. Ingredients: Australian Tomato, Sea Salt, Bush Tomato, Aniseed Myrtle, Mountain Pepper, Paprika and Garlic
  • Desert Fire Seasoning adds a bit of bite to any dish.  Ingredients: Saltbush, Chilli, Sea Salt, Mountain Pepper, Lemon Aspen, Garlic and Ginger.
  • Desert Flakes Seasoning to be used as seasoning, in sauces and casseroles or as a sprinkle over bread, meat, vegetables or pasta dishes.  Ingredients: Saltbush, Sea Salt, Bush Tomato, Wattleseed, Lemon Myrtle, Mountain Pepper, and garlic.
  • Swagmans Salt is used in breads, salsas, salad, tomato based dishes. Ingredients: Sea Salt, Native Basil, Sea Parsley, Native Thyme , Saltbush & Mountain  Pepper.
  • Tropical Pepperberry Sea Salt Use it as a rub or to add a kick to any dish.  Particularly nice sprinkled over sweet ripe tomatoes and smashed avocado.  Ingredients: Sea salt, Mountain pepper and Lemon Aspen

Jessicurl Aquavescent Hair Spray

Alcohol, and propellant-free spray for soft, beautiful curls

Introducing the newest member of the Jessicurl family of products – Aquavescent Hair Spray.

Keep your curls on lock with this strong hold alcohol- free spray.

Aquavescent Hair Spray is the curl-friendly hair spray you’ve been waiting for. This fantastic frizz-fighter gives you all day and night hold, and humidity protection without the dryness that comes with alcohol-based hairsprays. Use this hair spray on styled curls for strong hold and more volume without the added weight of an additional styling product.

https://www.suzeeblu.com.au/Jessicurl-Curly-Hair-Styling-c33244320

Mountain Pepperberry: Plentiful again and perfect for Winter

Used both as an ornamental as well as a bush tucker plant the cool climate Mountain Pepper produce both a leaf and a berry.  The leaf provides a mild pepper taste but the berry has an unexpected zing.  Just when you think they are sweet their kick begins.  To some it could be quite hot.

Pepperberries are more versatile than conventional peppercorn, able to be used in sweet and savoury dishes.   The leaves, stems and berries have an aromatic peppery taste producing approx. 3 times the anti-oxidants of blueberries.

Pepperberry not only adds depth to a casserole or slow cooker, it imparts a beautiful rich burgundy colour to the dish.

Slow cooked Pepperberry Wagyu  (perfect for Winter)

Ingredients
2 small red onions
1 carrot
1 stick of celery
1 red capsicum
2 cloves of garlic (crushed)
420gm cubed Wagyu Chuck Beef
1 Tablespoon Pepperberry – coarse ground of whole
2 Tablespoons Tomato Paste
1 cup of water
1 teaspoon Bush Tomato 

Dice the vegetables and place in the slow cooker, add garlic, beef, Pepperberry, Tomato paste and water. Mix well to combine.

Slow cook for 7 hours.

10 minutes before serving add bush tomato seasoning and salt to taste. Serve with pasta, steamed beans and wild rocket salad.

Ingredients curly hair loves

Finding out what ingredients are in your hair products shouldn’t be hard. It shouldn’t be complicated either. And for all the curly haired people out there, it can be extra challenging.

Every ingredient in every Jessicurl product is there for the specific positive effect it will have on your hair. There are no fillers.

You can also rest assured that NO JESSICURL products contain any animal ingredients, nor do we test on animals. All products are tested on many heads of curls. That’s right! On real people who actually want to be a part of the development. These aspects of Jessicurl will never change.

JESSICURL INGREDIENTS

Aloe Vera. All natural. Moisturizes the hair without adding heaviness.

Avocado Oil. All natural. One of the best natural oils for hair. Adds moisture, softness and shine.

Benzoic Acid. This is a component of the preservative system we use in some of our products. 

Behentrimonium Methosulfate and Cetearyl Alcohol. Naturally derived, but not all natural. Emulsifies and thickens the conditioners. Also aids in static control and comb ability. This is what makes the conditioners creamy and detangling.

C 12-15 Alkyl Benzoate. Not what I would consider to be natural. This emollient ester provides light conditioning with a silky-soft after feel.

Cocoa Butter. All natural. An extremely moisturizing butter that softens the hair.

Coconut Oil. All natural. One of the best oils for hair. Adds moisture, softness and shine.

Cetearyl Alcohol (and) Polysorbate 60. Not what I would consider to be natural. The combination of these two ingredients is what makes Confident Coils so nice and creamy. The Cetearyl Alcohol is a fatty alcohol and is actually good for your hair. It helps to moisturize the hair.

Cinnamal, Citral, Eugenol, Geraniol, Citronellol, Limonene, Linalool. These are naturally occurring active ingredients found in the essential oils used in some of our products.

Decyl Polyglucose and Cocamidopropyl Betaine. Naturally derived from sugar and coconut. These are two of the gentlest cleansers on the market. They keep our Hair Cleansing Cream and Gentle Lather Shampoo from stripping your hair but still get it clean.

Dehydroacetic Acid. This is a component of the preservative system we use in some of our products. 

Dehydroxanthan Gum. All natural. This is part of what makes Confident Coils so superb at creating chunky, defined curls. It also re-activates really well with water. This makes it easier to perk curls back up mid-day if they suffer a setback. 🙂

Diazolidinyl Urea (and) Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate. Not natural. Preservatives that keep the products from going bad. It makes up less than 1% of the entire weight of the formula. So we’re using enough to preserve the products but not so much that it could irritate your skin. Even with preservatives in products, it’s important to keep water and other stuff out of your products. They could still end up going bad. Close those caps!

Ethanol. You will see “alcohol” (in this case we use ethanol) listed as an ingredient in our Spiralicious Styling Gel. Ethanol is a necessary component in Polyquaternium 69 which is one of the ingredients we use in that gel. The proportion of ethanol is so low in this product that it does not have a negative effect.

Flax Seeds. All natural, organic. These provide a light hold that rinses out clean and will not build up. They’re what makes Rockin’ Ringlets and Gelebration Spray brown.

Guar Hydroxypropyltrimonium Chloride. Naturally derived. Thickens formula and is very conditioning. Helps to leave hair silky soft.

Hydrolyzed Oat Flour. All natural. Helps to thicken the formula and adds moisture to the hair.

Jojoba Oil. All natural. This oil is the closest of all oils to our skin’s own natural sebum. Adds softness and shine to hair.

Lecithin. All natural. Moisturizing and nourishing. We use only soy lecithin.

Magnesium Sulfate. All natural. This is plain old Epsom salt you’d soak your tired muscles in. The magnesium is a powerful curl enhancer, which is why we use it in our styling products.

Panthenol. Pro-Vitamin B5. Adds moisture and sheen to the hair.

Phenoxyethanol. A preservative that is considered one of the least sensitizing and also does not release formaldehyde. It’s approved worldwide (including in Japan and in the EU) for use in water-based cosmetics up to a 1% concentration. 

Polyimide 1. Not natural. One of the holding ingredients in Confident Coils. It’s particularly powerful at providing humidity protection and keeping your curls well defined.

Polyquaternium 11. Not natural. Water-soluble and provides hold without making the hair tacky or sticky. It is found only in and is one of the key ingredients of Spiralicious Styling Gel.

Polyquaternium 69. Not natural. This ingredient is water-soluble, provides hold, increased shine, frizz reduction and very effective in high humidity. Also doesn’t flake like other styling agents. It is found only in Spiralicious Styling Gel and is one of the key ingredients.

Shea Butter. All natural. An extremely moisturizing butter that comes from the Karite tree in Africa.

Vegetable Glycerin. All natural. This is a humectant, meaning it draws moisture from the air into the hair shaft, resulting in much softer hair. It means it doesn’t build up on the hair. However, using too much at once can make your hair look greasy until you wash it again.

VP/VA Copolymer. Not natural. This provides some of the hold in Confident Coils. This ingredient is only found in Confident Coils. We understand that

Water Infused with Horsetail, Marshmallow, Basil, Burdock, Nettle, Coltsfoot, Parsley, Sage, Oregano, Lemongrass, Peppermint, Rosemary, Bay Leaf, and Thyme. All natural, and 30% organic. This is our special “Hair Tea” used in our conditioners. All of these herbs are good for hair, aiding in softness, shine and overall health of the hair.

We LOVE curls >> SHOP HERE >>