Barbecued kangaroo tail with piri piri sauce

Barbecued kangaroo tail with piri piri sauce

Ben's Meat Bible
Benito Martin

I had this in Carnarvon while filming the second series of Surfing the Menu. We were having a barbecue with a bunch of people we had just met and I thought this dish was super-tasty. I didn’t ask for the recipe but came up with this version after playing around with the flavours. If you can’t get kangaroo tail, you could try using oxtail instead.


Quantity Ingredient
2 tablespoons sunflower oil
1 large kangaroo tail, cut into 4 pieces
1 brown onion, finely chopped
2 carrots, finely chopped
2 celery stalks, finely chopped
1 small bunch thyme sprigs
1 bay leaf
1 cinnamon stick
750ml chicken stock
250g tomato passata

Piri piri sauce

Quantity Ingredient
4 red chillies, roughly chopped
8 small dried red chillies
4 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon sea salt flakes
4 tablespoons whisky
1 tablespoon sherry vinegar or red-wine vinegar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
250ml olive oil


  1. If you can, make the piri piri sauce a day or two in advance. Blend the chillies, garlic and salt in a food processor or blender until you have a smooth paste. Transfer the paste to a small saucepan and stir in the whisky, vinegar, lemon juice and 125 ml of the oil. Bring to the boil, remove from the heat and whisk in the remaining oil. Set aside.
  2. Preheat the oven to 160°C.
  3. Heat the sunflower oil in a non-stick frying pan and brown the kangaroo over medium heat for 3–4 minutes. Add the onion, carrots, celery, thyme sprigs, bay leaf and cinnamon stick. Sauté for about 5 minutes, or until the vegetables are well coloured. Pour in the stock, add the tomato passata, bring to the boil and place a tight-fitting lid on the pan. Cook in the oven for 2 hours, or until the meat is very tender.
  4. Remove from the oven and transfer the kangaroo to a plate. Reduce the sauce over medium–high heat for 5–10 minutes. Add 3 tablespoons of piri piri to the sauce (or more to taste) and stir to combine. Any leftover piri piri can be stored in an airtight jar and refrigerated for up to 1 month. Use it to jazz up a mayonnaise or as a condiment in a burger.
  5. Heat the barbecue to medium or set a large chargrill pan over medium heat.
  6. Cut 4 large sheets each of aluminium foil and baking paper. Place the paper on top of the foil. Brush the cooked kangaroo in the piri piri–spiked sauce, lay one piece on top of each paper and foil stack and wrap into a parcel. Cook the kangaroo parcels on the hot barbecue or chargrill pan for about 20 minutes, turning a few times to ensure they cook evenly. Open the parcels up carefully and allow to cool slightly before serving.
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