The Indigenous kitchen of earthly delights

The Indigenous kitchen of earthly delights

Sydneysiders used to enjoying the food of Italy, China and other parts of the world, will have the chance to try a cuisine that’s much closer to home, when the City of Sydney hosts an Aboriginal dindal at Centennial Parklands.

City staff, in collaboration with the Centennial Park Trust and Waverley Council, will be digging a hole at the 125-year-old parklands to create a dindal, or earth oven, which uses hot rocks to slow cook meat and vegetables wrapped in leaves.

Lord Mayor Clover Moore said the free celebration, or kunbal, is being held from midday to 4pm on Friday 12 July to mark NAIDOC Week.

“This wonderful outdoor feast will show off a great, but little known, aspect of the world’s oldest continuously living culture,” the Lord Mayor said.

“Through events like the annual NAIDOC in the City and our Eora Journey program, we’re encouraging a greater understanding and respect for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture and heritage.”

The dindal is a cooking style from Far North Queensland that uses hot rocks buried in a pit to heat, roast, steam and bake food all at once. City Youth Development Officer, David Beaumont, said local children and young people would help prepare, cook and serve the food.

“This dindal in the middle of Sydney is a great opportunity to teach young people about traditional methods of cooking, while also showing them how important it is to share their own culture and stories with others,” Mr Beaumont said.

“Last year we created a traditional Torres Strait Islander kup murrie, which is a similar method of cooking. It was great to be allowed to dig a traditional cooking pit in the middle of Centennial Parklands and to share our mother earth food with others.”

The dindal will be located near the Learning Centre at Centennial Parklands and will be launched by a Welcome to Country and traditional smoking ceremony. Sean Ryan, a proud Kuku Nyunkal man from Far North Queensland, will provide guidance on how best to create and cook in the dindal.

The cooking event is part of the week-long national NAIDOC festival, running from 7-14 July. For more information visit


For media inquiries or images, contact City of Sydney Senior Media Adviser Jodie Minus, phone 0467 803 815 or email

For interviews with Lord Mayor Clover Moore, contact Jonathon Larkin on 0477 310 149 or email