Kan­ga­roo pies are a knock­out

Dubbo Photo News - - News - By JOHN RYAN

THERE was plenty go­ing on at last week­end’s mas­sive Koori rugby league Knock­out in Dubbo, but while much of the fo­cus was on the amaz­ing and in­tu­itive footy be­ing played, there were plenty of things hap­pen­ing be­neath the sur­face.

Many peo­ple at­tend­ing the Knock­out told Dubbo Photo News they felt this gath­er­ing of so many Abo­rig­i­nal peo­ple from across NSW was as close as they could get to a mod­ern-day ver­sion of a tra­di­tional Cor­ro­boree, a gath­er­ing of many groups from dif­fer­ent na­tions to cel­e­brate cul­ture and ex­tended fam­ily.

Keep­ing many of the vis­i­tors fed was “Meat Broth­ers” founder Corey Grech, who scored plenty of ad­mir­ers with his Chilli Kan­ga­roo pies.

A Gamileroi man from Coon­abarabran, Corey is now based at Touk­ley on the NSW cen­tral coast.

“In 2008 my sis­ter (Suz) opened up an Indige­nous café at Red­fern, called Pur­ple Goanna, and I pretty much got roped in to be­ing the cook and barista and found it was some­thing that I loved do­ing,” Mr Grech said.

“I’ve moved on over the last 10 or so years and things have pro­gressed from mak­ing sausages to pies.

“The pies seem to be a sim­ple fit for try­ing to get peo­ple to eat kan­ga­roo. We’ve found it hard over the years to con­sume kan­ga­roo – it’s on the na­tional em­blem, it’s Skippy, you’ve heard it all, but if it’s in a pie peo­ple will eat it,” he told

The hum­ble Aussie meat pie has been a main­stream tra­di­tion for decades, and Mr Grech’s many cus­tomers like the Indige­nous slant on the stan­dard recipe and be­lieve there’s some­thing spe­cial about that.

“Yeah, that hap­pens with most of the food we end up do­ing. At the café we used to do a kan­ga­roo lasagne – we have a Mal­tese back­ground as well,” Mr Grech ex­plained.

“We knocked about a bit over the years and now we’ve come to the point where we’ve con­cen­trated that in a pie.”

He says the car­ni­val is a chance for his busi­ness to con­tribute and give some­thing back.

“The Knock­out is some­thing that we try to do ev­ery year. It’s not easy and if we weren’t here with a food stall I’d be play­ing, which is prob­a­bly the main rea­son why I do have a food stall, there’s been some good footy and some hard hits,” Mr Grech said.

“To have ev­ery­body in one place at one time, we nor­mally sell our pies for $6.50, but we sell them for $5 here be­cause the com­mu­nity give-back at $1.50 a pie is noth­ing, it eats into our prof­its but it’s worth it to give ev­ery­body a qual­ity prod­uct, some­thing de­cent to eat and not too ex­pen­sive.

“It’s the clos­est thing we’ve got to a Cor­ro­boree, a gath­er­ing of fam­ily and friends,” he said.

Corey Grech sell­ing his Chilli Kan­ga­roo pies at last week­end’s Koori Knock­out. Mr Grech said the long week­end footy car­ni­val is a mod­ern-day Cor­ro­boree. PHOTO: DUBBO PHOTO NEWS

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