When was the last time you tasted a crocodile damper ball? Or, had a bite of kangaroo? One catering company's bush tucker menu is taking off, and helping to spread awareness about the traditions of Australia's first people.
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Small Business Secrets
21 Apr - 5:09 PM  UPDATED 24 Apr - 11:13 AM

A conversation with his Uncle Barry encouraged Daryll Brown to widen the menu of his newly formed catering company in 2009.

With his wife Nene, Darryl operates Kallico Catering, supplying function food, with a twist.

Alongside cheese boards and sandwich plates is also kangaroo, emu and "koori-schetta."

Nene Brown said the company is proud to bring "bush tucker" to the masses.

"There are native foods that Aboriginal people have been eating for 40,000 years so it's really important that people get to try it and enjoy the beautiful flavours that these foods have," Ms Brown told SBS.

The food is cooked at the family's estate in Ilaroo, south of Sydney.

The lean operation employs a high number of Indigenous workers and is attracting a wide variety of clients.

At a 60th birthday party last year, Nene said there were crowds dressed in green and gold scoffing down the native foods.

"It's nice to see the traditional foods being eaten," Ms Brown said.

"It's something that should have been in our normal, staple diet for anyone [in Australia.]

"You go to countries all over the world and they have Italian food, Chinese food, yet here in Australia we have a meat pie or fish and chips!"

While there are more conventional items on the menu, the Browns say most customers mix and match to include native items and flavours.

Kallico Catering turns over around $300,000 a year, but there have been some steep learning curves along the way.

Nene said there are always problems that can arise when working with food on a large scale, and would advise other chefs to take as many courses as possible before starting a business venture.

"Daryll and I probably work 70 hours a week," Nene said.

"If you've got good staff, the company will flourish and grow."

Daryll hopes Kallico Catering will eventually employ more people and inspire other Indigenous chefs.

"[Just spreading] the word a bit and inspiring other Indigenous companies and the wider population to give the Indigenous foods a go- it's really nice!"

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