Whet your appetite for a Red Centre foodie adventure with these perky summer picnics.There are some things in life that go perfectly together – humps and camels, beef and jerky and Uluru and sunsets, and then there are things that surprise. In the food world, every chef knows the iconic duos and can pull an unexpected twist on classic ingredients, but what if that twist involved other senses? A perfect pairing of food and location to stimulate the senses and refresh the palate? With Christmas almost upon us, our intrepid reporter took to Alice Springs to find the perfect summertime picnic pairing.Flamboyant Chef Lisa Perry is one of the Queens of NT catering and a woman who has created thousands of special food moments for Territorians with Reality Bites catering. Home grown in Alice, this foodie stalwart won’t disappoint when it comes to preparing a modern picnic feast.Arancini balls, chilli lime prawns or pulled pork buns add a touch of flair to any picnic basket and the aroma of great food will surely spill over to neighbouring picnickers making you the toast of the picnic grounds.Lisa’s a dab hand with platters, quiches and hot or cold noodle boxes, but her salads – Moroccan chickpea and carrot, Asian slaw with sesame oil and soy, or lentil and tabouleh with lemon – really drive home the tastes of summer with a modern spin.
The shaded lawns of the Alice Springs Telegraph Station Historical Reserve, with their big, beautiful gum trees, are a popular place for summertime picnics, with easy access to electric barbecues, it’s a firm family favourite. Steeped in history, the reserve marks the spot of the very first European settlement in Alice Springs and is the best preserved of all the stations along the Overland Telegraph line.And, when the dining’s done and your sweet tooth kicks in, you can always stop by the Trail Station Café for one of their yummy vanilla slices (made from a secret recipe) and an espresso. Or, if you’re full to the brim and feel like a physical challenge post lunch, try one of the mountain bike trails or short walks nearby. If you don’t have your own bike, you can easily hire one from the Telegraph Station.
HOW TO GET THERE
The Telegraph Station and reserve is accessible all year round and is an easy 4km drive, walk or cycle from Todd Mall. An entry fee is payable if you want to access the Historical Precinct (it’s free for locals).
REALITY BITES CATERING
Catering by appointment – 08 8953 3900