Two of Wes’ requests while visiting us in Melbourne were to see a kangaroo, and to eat a kangaroo.  A bit perverse, yes.  But, given that roo cooking was also one of my 2011 New Years’ Resolutions, I was game .  After a day out and about at Healesville Sanctuary visiting with kangaroos, we came home to roast up some kangaroo loin. 

After reading up on a few different recipes, I realized that kangaroo is like chicken – but red.  You can prepare it in a hundred different ways: seared filet, roasted or grilled, stir fry, stew, baked pasta with roo mince, you name it, you can do it with a roo. 

One thing I absolutely LOVE about living in Richmond is that within 2 blocks walking distance of our house  are a farmer’s market (Saturdays), butcher, deli, and bakery.  It’s pretty awesome.  So on Saturday morning, I popped over to the market to get some fresh heirloom heart tomatoes (like engorged roma tomatoes, with a hint of yellow coloring at the base), figs, and a handful of potatoes, and picked up the kangaroo loin I’d pre-ordered at the butcher. 

About an hour before it was time to feast, I marinated the loin in a rosemary and garlic olive oil rub. 

When it was time to eat, we seared the loin quickly in a saute pan, rolled it in a dry rub of jerk, onion salt, heaps of black pepper and a bit of ground mustard, and into the oven it went.  It is a bit of a tricky meat to cook (and I have to admit I have gotten better, but still not really mastered the art of celsius convection oven cooking).  We cooked it for 20 minutes, let it rest, and carved it up.  It was superbly tasty, and soft and supple enough, but even I (the queen of chargrilled meats) agreed it could have been just a tad rarer.  I think 12-15 mins at 180°C is the sweet spot, and be sure to let it rest a full 5-8 minutes before carving.

Serve on top of garlic mash, with roasted tomatoes and green beans, and figs (basted in balsamic, honey and with a slice of parmesan on top) on the side, and a robust (preferably decanted) pinor noir.  Voila!

1 down; 9 to go in 2011!