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Native juniper, an Australian spice

Updated: Feb 13, 2021

How about keeping it local native juniper for gin or other recipe substitutes.

The Boobialla can be grown as a screen or hedge and can be pruned all year round. Pruning does not affect the flowering or fruiting of this plant. Flowering from October to December and towards the end of summer the smooth, round, purple berries, when crushed and infused leaves a unique mild juniper like flavour, with spicy, floral qualities makes the Boobialla an exciting local botanical for essential oils and gin fermentation.


These magnificent little berries also have an astringent sweetness, which makes them ideal for jams, tarts cakes, or preserving. I reckon a jam would go a treat on wattle seed scones! Also when ripe (purple coloured) the berries are edible off the plant. These berries can also be preserved for a later use and a good preserving technique is dehydrating the berries in your dehydrator. One of sauerkraut's traditional ingredients is the European juniper berry and if you like using the European juniper berry with your meat and game recipes, or you like to be creative with your cooking, then you will have to experiment with the native juniper!


Rabbit Cacciatore Recipe

Preparation and cooking time

Prep: 30 minutes

Cook: 1 hour & 30 minutes

Easy

Serves 4


Ingredients

  • 900g/2lb rabbit pieces

  • 2 tbsp flour seasoned with salt and Native mountain bush pepper Tasmannia Lanceolata

  • 3 tbsp olive oil

  • 2 x onions, chopped

  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped

  • Large bunch Native sea parsley, chopped Apium prostratum

  • 300ml white wine

  • 2 x 400g/14oz cans cherry tomatoes

  • About 20 large green olives

  • 1 tbsp sugar

Method

  • STEP 1

Toss the rabbit in the flour. Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a large, shallow pan and brown the rabbit in 3 batches, adding another tbsp oil for each batch. Lift out all the rabbit onto a plate and set aside. Add the onions and garlic to the pan with the remaining oil, and then gently cook for 15 mins until softened. Add most of the parsley and cook for a few mins more. Return the rabbit to the pan and pour in the wine. Turn up the heat and bubble the wine until half-reduced, then stir in the cherry tomatoes. If the rabbit isn’t completely covered, add a splash of water.

  • STEP 2

Cover the pan and simmer for 40 mins until the rabbit is tender – the timing can vary, but if it’s still tough just continue to cook, adding more water if needed, and the meat will eventually start to come away from the bone. When the meat is ready, throw in the olives, cover and simmer for 5-10 mins more. Season with sugar, salt and pepper, then scatter with the remaining parsley to serve. Serve with polenta, yam daisy & potato mash, flat pasta, such as tagliatelle



Wanna plant one here's some tips for you.


Myoporum insulare or as it is commonly known as the Common Boobialla, Boobialla or the Native juniper, This salt tolerant fruiting shrub is native to Western Australia, South Australia, Victoria, Tasmania and New South Wales growing wild on dunes, coastal cliffs and mangrove fringes. Boobialla is so hardy and can adapt to many climate and soil conditions, it was and still is a favourite for roadside FWY & HWY plantings and is a great establishing plant for coastal revegetation but please check your local ecological vegetation class or ask your local environment/friends of group and see if it is found naturally locally before you use it in a potential revegetation project. Lots of Australian natives have the potential to become a weed.



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