Ongerup yabbies, samphire, nam jim

A glorious road trip down south for the IGA Taste Great Southern Festival took me to the tiny town of Ongerup via Albany proving that our great southern land is truly magnificent, resplendent with malleefowl, kangaroos and emus crossing deserted highways and winding roads up to the Stirling Ranges.

Catching yabbies and marron for dinner on arrival was a memorable meal in its simplicity and complexity of flavours. I still marvel at how freshwater dams can produce such good eating with marron flesh so similar to saltwater crayfish. This salad features yabbies, samphire and nam jim which wowed the crowd down south.

A huge shoutout to the organisers Richard Campbell from CMS Events, the staff and volunteers at the Yongergnow-Ongerup CRC, and to my fun filled hosts Gail and George who supplied the yabbies and hosted me for two nights. A special mention to Kirsty Boyd for all her assistance – we were prepped up and ready to plate an hour early – so there was even time for bubbles! This was the perfect opportunity to showcase the produce of the region as well as enjoying good food, good wine and good company. I met so many wonderful folk and a huge thanks to those who travelled so far, I was touched to learn that my food as medicine message preceded me and that it radiates into regional WA.


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Ongerup yabbies, samphire, nam jim

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  • Author: Samantha Gowing
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4


Units Scale

1 kg fresh yabbies, cooked, peeled, cleaned, sliced in half lengthways
100 ml macadamia oil
1 clove garlic, peeled and crushed
Cayenne pepper

10g samphire, cleaned, finely chopped
2 cups sunflower sprouts
1 cucumber, peeled, seeded, finely sliced
1 birdseye chilli, seeded, finely sliced
1 small red onion, very finely sliced
1/4 bunch Vietnamese mint
1/4 bunch Thai basil
Pinch salt
Freshly ground black pepper

Nam Jim dressing
5 grams coconut or palm sugar
50ml fresh lime juice
Dash fish sauce, more to taste
2 small red chillies
1 clove garlic, chopped
50 grams fresh ginger root

Edible flowers
Yabby claws


  1. Clean the yabbies and set aside.
  2. Meanwhile process the Nam Jim dressing in a food processor
  3. Set aside to allow flavours to develop.
  4. Combine the salad ingredients.
  5. Add the yabbies and fold through dressing.
  6. Distribute into 4 bowls or plates and garnish with yabby claws and flowers.
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes

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Salad of king prawn, spanner crab, Nam Jim dressing



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