Great Cooks of the Desert

April 17, 2024
Two separate images placed side by side with the first featuring two people having a conversation in a tool shed while preparing salami on a plate and the second image featuring a woman in a bright red top pouring salt into a large saucepan in a house kitchen

8CCC’s Great Cooks of The Desert follows the remarkable lives of five creative home cooks, who call the desert home.

Produced by Rita Cattoni – show host of 8CCC’s Kitchen Radio and video & podcast producer based in Mparntwe/Alice Springs – the five-part series explores the challenges and joys of life in the desert.

From the impact of imported grasses on traditional hunting grounds, to risky reliance on transport networks in the supply of fresh produce, ‘Great Cooks of The Desert’ looks at the day-to-day reality of living in a place of extreme contradictions and being thousands of kilometres away from family, friends and the nearest capital city.

Follow James young, a leather artisan, cameleer and salami maker, who travels the deserts of Central Australia with his partner, three children, the family dog, three camels and a wagon – it’s his idea of a family holiday!  Join Yamuna Oldfield on a bush trip to hunt for goanna and explore the idea of a Warlpiri cuisine.  Get a glimpse of station life at Mt Riddock Station, as Rebecca Cadzoe makes cheese in her home kitchen using milk from her own troupe of jersey cows!

The series has been an incredible collaboration with a wide array of creatives in field recording, photography and audio editing, including PAW Media who provided production support on  Episode 3: Warlpiri Cuisine, captured in Yuendumu in the Western Desert.

8CCC were a recipient of CBF’s Round 1 Content grant 2021/22.  Funding included salary support for production crew, publicity and marketing, recording equipment and other administrative costs.

Tune into ‘Great Cooks of the Desert’ on Saturdays 12pm – 1pm on 8CCC 102.1FM and On Demand where you can find the recipes and more!

[Image:  Rita Cattoni with James Young (Episode 1); Flora Mpofu preparing traditional Zimbabwean food (Episode 4)]