If you want to play badminton in Speedos on Australia Day, then you’re more than welcome to. “Just don’t expect it to become the national sport,” explains a staunch Sam Kekovich.
If you haven’t heard of the name then you’ve probably seen the face. Kekovich is Australia’s foremost authority on all things lamb, BBQs and this great big slab of land we like to call home. The ex-AFL player is recognised as an Australian ‘Lambassador’, a media personality who has spent the better part of the decade yelling at citizens to consume lamb on Australia Day.
Some like him, some don’t. But the beauty of his satirical approach to spruiking the lamb industry lies in his polarising and often controversial monologues. Don’t like meat? You mustn’t be Australian.
We love a bit of savagery at D’Marge, so ahead of this year’s Australia Day we asked Sam Kekovich to tell us how to throw a bloody awesome Australia Day BBQ.
Pay attention, numnuts.
Who Should Be On Your Australia Day Invite List
“Everyone and anyone who wishes to attend,” according to Kekovich.
“Mates of mates and friends of friends. There’s no restrictions. We don’t discriminate at my BBQ. It’s all about inclusion and there’s always enough food for everyone.”
Kekovich also listed these people as potential invites for a bloody awesome Australia Day BBQ:
- Past team mates
- Old friends
- New friends
He also noted some people who you should probably keep off the invite list due to a high rate of rejection:
“There’s a distinct possibility that they might not back my invitation, but who cares?”
The BBQ Host Always Supplies The Goods
Kekovich believes that there’s no need to bring anything as a guest as it’s the golden rule that the host always provides. With the exception of discerning ballers.
“For those who are more affluent or beacons of excess, they can have a palate that’s more responsive to a extremely expensive wine or champagne – they can certainly bring their own.”
Topics You Should Avoid Talking About
Sam Kekovich is very clear on what you should never bring to the forefront of banter at an Australian Day BBQ. Here’s what he reckons.
- My wives (i.e. any exes or past lovers that may cause you to break down like a slobbering mess in front of family and friends)
- Whether Collingwood can ever win a premiership again
- Religion should never be on the topic of discussion. And politics – they’re boring. Talk about climate change and Bitcoins instead
Who Gets To Helm The BBQ Grill
The BBQ party host always controls the tongs, according to Sam Kekovich.
“No one but me. If you allow too many people to hover around the BBQ, they tend to be dilettantes,” he says. “There’s an art form to being at a good BBQ. So many people want to flip-flop, flip-flop because they can’t control the (BBQ) hand movements. I’m averse to letting too many hands spoil the broth, so to speak.”
Kekovich’s tips for the perfect tasting BBQ:
- Leave the meat on the BBQ simmering until you see a little blood appearing on the surface, then it flip them over.
Tell Someone If They’re Crap At BBQ-ing
There’s a delicate art form to telling someone that their handy work on the grill is shit. And the answer certainly isn’t to ignore it unless you like carcinogenic protein laoding.
“Most certainly bring it to their attention,” says Sam Kekovich. “We’re Australian so we’re not patronising or condescending, but if there’s an error in their way then you should certainly bring it to their attention in a civil manner.”
The Kekovich solution:
- “A slap across the mush and tell them to get better. Simple rules. There’s no HR department at our BBQs.”
Great Aussies To Invite To Get The Party Started
Kekovich says that your Australia Day shindig should already have great Aussies, but if you wanted to be picky, these would be the right picks.
- Ron Barassi
- Mark Latham – apparently he’s a voice of moderation and restraint with a balanced view on most things
- Julia Gillard – Kekovich believes she can extend the olive branch to Latham over lamb
Sports Should Be Involved On The Day
Kekovich staunchly believes that sport defines who we are and is very much a part of our DNA.
“We’re very lucky in this country unlike a lot of other regions of the world where the yellow orb shines brightly on us. We’re outgoing people and sport is such a defining tool that binds us together like a lamb BBQ. A unifying catalyst. It wreaks of great values and teaches us morals.
But what sports should never be played on Australia Day?
- Darts – “I wouldn’t encourage darts as a sport. But anyone who’s out there and doing a bit of activity rock and rolling again is a good thing.”
- Speedos and badminton – “There’s nothing wrong with that. It wouldn’t be our national game, but still it’s exercise.”
Cook The Lamb To Near-Damn Perfection
“I like mine well done and not so pink,” says Kekovich. It might not be to everyone’s taste but the following is mandatory to making the perfect BBQ lamb.
- Marinate it overnight in wine
- Add chilli powder
- Add lots of garlic
- Set your BBQ grill carefully and keep the heat uniform
- Pay attention and don’t burn anything
“Remember Australia Day,” stresses Kekovich. There’s nothing worse than celebrating Australia Day on April 1st.
“Invite everyone and rejoice in living in the best country on the planet. And stock up your fridge with lamb.”