Foodies looking for a unique dining experience need to add this to their must-visit list: a visit to the Northern Territory's Cicada Lodge.
Located in the magnificent Nitmiluk Gorge not too far from the town of Katherine, the lodge is known for its incredible sunsets and glorious native bush surroundings. It’s also known for its world-class fare, including unforgettable canapés that use local flavours and produce you won't find anywhere else in the world. One in particular offers a 'true taste of the Northern Territory’: confit crocodile tail with bush spices. Fancy a taste, but can’t make it to the Northern Territory any time soon? Cicada Lodge has been kind enough to share the recipe with us, so you can challenge your inner MasterChef with unusual ingredients to rival any mystery box. Just a heads up, it's all about the slow-cook method – and make sure you talk to your butcher in advance, and check that they sell crocodile tail!
Recipe: Confit crocodile tail with bush spices
Salt and pepper
Native spices/seasonings (e.g. bush tomato, pepperberry, native thyme and chilli)
• Coat crocodile tail in olive oil and lightly season with sea salt and pepper (this semi-cures the meat and protects it when cooking)
• Wrap in paperbark leaves (Cicada Lodge source theirs naturally from Nitmiluk Gorge, but they can be obtained from a good grocers)
• Fill tray of water and place underneath meat (this creates a moist environment so the tail doesn’t dry out)
• Cook in a warm oven (100˚C) for 12 hours
• Add native spices/seasonings (they’re quite intense, so should only be used in the final stages of cooking so that they don’t overpower the meat
• Serve with pepper berry chutney (recipe below) and a glass of chilled dry white.
• Sweat all ingredients (except for the Roma tomatoes) in a large, heavy based saucepan
• Add Roma tomatoes and reduce over a low heat until the chutney is thick and glossy