February 18, 2015

National Multicultural Festival

National Multicultural Festival - Anna Johnston - www.shenannagans.com

One of Canberra’s BEST public events and a personal favourite of mine was in town on the weekend. International Food on a Stick Day, or the more formal of us know it as the National Multicultural Festival.

Word is, tens of thousands of people flocked to the Berra’s city centre for the 19th annual festival. 3 days of sampling amazingness from 100’s of different food and drink stalls, it really is the perfect excuse to gorge yourself.

Anna, Hannah & Dave Multicultural Festival Menslink - National Multicultural Festival - Anna Johnston - www.shenannagans.com

Find and thank a volunteer for helping celebrate the 19th National Multicultural Festival! #bingotick

I kicked my festival shenANNAgans off with a spot of fundraising for Menslink, a local charity that holds a special place in my heart. This great organisation is all about supporting young men, regardless of their race, country of origin, mental state, parentage or religion. We assisted in raising over $7,000. #boom

Anna Multicultural Festival BINGO - National Multicultural Festival - Anna Johnston - www.shenannagans.com

Post community service, my greasy smiling chums and I hit the pavement, Multicultural Festival Bingo sheet – (which I won #boomdiggity) in hand for some serious foodie globetrotting, trawling Garema Place with a cold beer in one hand, and a BBQd something in the other.

Hungarian Hot Dog Multifest 2015 - National Multicultural Festival - Anna Johnston - www.shenannagans.com

I was craving meat, so chowed on a Hungarian Hot Dog. But majority of people in line were waiting for Langos, a unique Hungarian fried bread topped with garlic, cheese and sour cream.

Italian Dancers Multifest 2015 - National Multicultural Festival - Anna Johnston - www.shenannagans.com

Take a video of a performance in a language you don’t understand. #bingotick

The festival is an exciting mix of chaos, noise, smells and sounds; traditionally dressed dancers, great bands and musical celebrations all happening on small stages that are spread around the cities boardwalk.

Beer Boys - Pabst Blue Ribbon American Beer - National Multicultural Festival - Anna Johnston - www.shenannagans.com

Drink beer from two different continents. #bingotick

These guys were selling Pabst Blue Ribbon American Beers and donating all proceeds to ‘A Start in Life Foundation’. Drinking beer for a good cause!

Turkish Gozleme Multifest 2015 - National Multicultural Festival - Anna Johnston - www.shenannagans.com

Eat something Turkish & eat something vegetarian – Turkish Gozleme #bingotick

Sicilia Ricotta Cannoli Multifest 2015 - National Multicultural Festival - Anna Johnston - www.shenannagans.com

How could I resist….Mmmmm….. Cannoli, a tube-shaped shell of fried pastry dough filled with a sweet, creamy filling usually containing ricotta.

I absolutely insist you add this epic Canberra event to your calendar now, because hot dang it was a fun filled way to spend a day.

I’d love to know, do you dig foodie festivals? And which countries cuisine do you naturally find yourself drawn too and eating from?

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shenANNAgans is Anna Johnston, a 30 - something Aussie gal with an unwavering passion for the Hospitality industry. I love the quirky and unusual, designing events, travelling far and wide and eating food from all around the world. I am coffee blooded, a craft beer enthusiast, wine drinking yogi who enjoys writing about her adventures.

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Sue Slaght - February 25, 2015 Reply

That looks like terrific fun! Now I didn’t see a Canadian flag on that sheet. Hmmmm 🙂

    Anna - February 25, 2015 Reply

    Haha! Maybe no Canadian flag on the sheet, but dont worry, we visited Canada via a brew or 2. LOL! 🙂

Amanda (@lambsearshoney) - February 24, 2015 Reply

Wow -this food looks amazing – what a fantastic idea for a festival! I quite hungry now, and the vegemite on toast I was planning for lunch has lost it’s allure.

    Anna - February 24, 2015 Reply

    It was amazing Amanda. Such a great way to trip around the world and experience a bunch of new foods and drink too.
    Ha, you could add some cheese to your vegemite toastie for that extra buzz. 🙂

Gourmet Getaways - February 24, 2015 Reply

First off, it was a great cause. Second, OMG on the food!!! Turkish pastries really rock! Looked like the event was so fun-filled. Congrats on raising the funds, too!

Julie & Alesah
Gourmet Getaways xx

    Anna - February 24, 2015 Reply

    Why thank ya Julie & Alesah. 🙂 Was a fun way to kick off my Multifest fun that’s for sure. All the yes to the food, it was amazing. Had some great brews too. Cant wait for 2016.

Sammie - February 23, 2015 Reply

Oh gosh! These food festivals never fail to get me excited! hehe. Looks like you had a lot of fun!

    Anna - February 24, 2015 Reply

    Me too Sammie! Such a fun way to spend a day. I only wish our fine city had them every other month. 🙂

Tim | UrbanDuniya - February 23, 2015 Reply

Love stuff like this!! We have multicultural week coming up in Melbourne next month. Will I be there? Yes I will, with my eating shirt on!! I always head to Mexican, Turkish and Thai (although my all-time favourite cuisines are Thai, Indian, Italian and Japanese – but I get Indian and Italian all the time, and I’m not really drawn to Japanese at festivals).

    Anna - February 23, 2015 Reply

    Haha…. I can totes picture you wearing your ‘Eating Shirt’. 🙂
    All the yes to Mexican and Thai, not as much for the Turkish. Dont really think I saw too much Japanese wise at the festival, will keep my eyes peeled at the next event.
    PS: You should you come visit for the next Multifest. 🙂

      Tim | UrbanDuniya - February 23, 2015 Reply

      Done – I’ll be at Multifest Canberra 2016, and you come to White Night Melbourne 2016!! 🙂

        Anna - February 23, 2015 Reply

        Done deal my friend! 🙂 Lock it in.

Bam's Kitchen - February 23, 2015 Reply

Congratulations on raising money for this effort! Looks like a great time, who can resist food , beers and hanging out with your friends. Have a super week.

    Anna - February 23, 2015 Reply

    Cheers BAM! 🙂 Yep, wish every other week involved a foodie festival. 🙂
    Wishing you a super week ahead too. xo

Raymund - February 23, 2015 Reply

Wow looks like you had an awesome time!
I want to visit those types of festivals

    Anna - February 23, 2015 Reply

    Come on over Raymund, I’d be more than happy to play tour guide when you visit. 🙂

My Inner Chick - February 23, 2015 Reply

What Fun!
What a Feast!
Ahhh, the life of Anna! xxx

    Anna - February 23, 2015 Reply

    Yes, Yes & Yes! 🙂
    Such a fun event, it has left me with some serious food cravings tho.
    Hope you are well lovely Kim. Hugs & Loves. xo

Sophie - February 23, 2015 Reply

What a fun day out raising money & eating a lot of different tasty foods! I am in! x

I love food festivals too!

    Anna - February 23, 2015 Reply

    Yes, it was a wonderful and super tasty day Sophie. Have been craving Cannoli for a week now. 🙂

Dedy@Dentist Chef - February 22, 2015 Reply

Lovin to see Indonesian flag on that leaflet you hold……

    Anna - February 23, 2015 Reply

    Not sure I ate anything Indonesian, Dedy. But I did see some Indonesian performances. 🙂

Pamela @ Brooklyn Farm Girl - February 21, 2015 Reply

Wow, it looks like you had a lot of delicious food and a good time! I’m jealous!

    Anna - February 23, 2015 Reply

    Great time had indeed Pamela, I totes wish they had foodie festivals every other weekend. So much deliciousness! 🙂

Hotly Spiced - February 20, 2015 Reply

What a fun day out and I do love the look of your ‘hot dog’. I do love these food events as all the nationalities present really do put on their best food for you and you get to try things you don’t normally eat. And excellent that the money raised is going to so many worthy causes xx

    Anna - February 23, 2015 Reply

    Hawt Dang that Hungarian Hot Dog was the business. 🙂
    Foodie events really are the bees knees, a fun way to experience a bunch of cultures in just a few hours. AND we got to do good for a local charity too.

Tandy | Lavender and Lime - February 20, 2015 Reply

Drinking beer for a good cause sounds perfect to me!

    Anna - February 20, 2015 Reply

    It made the brew even tastier! 🙂
    Happy Weekend Tandy.

Krista - February 20, 2015 Reply

What a fantastic event! Well done for such great work raising money. 🙂 I love foodie festivals, and am especially drawn to Eastern European food. I’d have been all over that Hungarian food. 🙂

    Anna - February 23, 2015 Reply

    Why thank ya Krista, we had a lot of fun fundraising for Menslink. 🙂
    The line for Hungarian was the longest, so you are not alone with your loves there.

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella - February 19, 2015 Reply

What a fun time! I love food festivals and a multi cultural one sounds like so much fun because there would be something for everyone or every mood! 😀

    Anna - February 23, 2015 Reply

    It was awesome Lorraine! Love that I could trip around the world in just a few hours. 🙂

Mabel Kwong - February 19, 2015 Reply

“International food on a stick day”. LOL, Anna, you are hilarious. I never thought of it that way, but it’s so true! 😀

I love food festivals. So many kinds of food around and you never get bored with eating. Though each portions are quite small and pricey at food festivals, I think you get what you are paying for and it’s worth it. Usually very delicious and everyone is so friendly.

The Canolli you had looks delicious. I hope that that wasn’t too much cream/ricotta for you. I don’t think so 😉

Although I’m Chinese, I’m generally drawn to Asian food festivals. I don’t know, maybe it’s just me but Asian street food does not taste the same if you cook it in a restaurant kitchen! I would like to try American street food one day where they have fried dougnuts, fried ice-cream and fried chocolate 🙂

    Anna - February 19, 2015 Reply

    Glad I made you laugh, Miss Mabel. 🙂

    The only challenge with food festivals, is finding room in your tummy to fit everything in. I think I must of been spoilt with the portion sizes of the food on the weekend, everything was huge (not that I’m complaining). The vibe at the festival was incredible, from the punters to the entertainers and stall holders, all were chippa and friendly. Really makes for an awesome event.

    Too much ricotta, you make me laugh. LOL! That Cannoli was amaze! The perfect balance of sweet and savory. Mmmm!

    I would have to agree about trying to replicate Asian street foods in a restaurant kitchen, they just never taste the same. I wouldn’t think it would be too difficult to find the American style fried street foods, just go to a carnival/show and you are sorted. 🙂

Rachel (Rachel's Kitchen NZ) - February 19, 2015 Reply

Oh, Anna, I love these kind of food festivals – always over indulge, of course, but they are so much fun and have such a good vibe. And you certainly looked as if you were having a good time:)

    Anna - February 19, 2015 Reply

    Yep…. Such fun! Felt pretty dusty on Sunday too. Ha! 🙂
    I rather impressed myself with how much food I could fit in.

Maureen | Orgasmic Chef - February 19, 2015 Reply

We don’t have anything that festive up here. You folks are really lucky!

    Anna - February 19, 2015 Reply

    Maureen, I say you and John hit the highway and come hang with me at the 2016 Multicultural Festival. Good idea yeah?!

The Squishy Monster - February 19, 2015 Reply

Hooray for winning Bingo and what a way to celebrate the victory! I always gravitate towards Asian, but I’m a bit biased =)

    Anna - February 19, 2015 Reply

    Thanks Squishy! My competitive streak kicked in with Multifest Bingo, but it totes made the day a whole lot more fun. I am with you on gravitating to Asian foods, but I think that is because Asia is the dominating influence in Australian cuisine, I grew up eating Asian inspired tukka.

Hannah - February 19, 2015 Reply

International Food on a Stick Day! Classic! The first thing I ate was Tibetan Lamb on a stick! It was excellent!

Anything with rice and noodles is a big thing for me. So Asian is always good. I love Thai but if you are offering dumplings I’m there. Basically Asian is a win. However pizza and pasta are definitely on my weekly dinner list. Italian YUM!!!!!!! Also Mexican food is always good!

Hmmmmm maybe I just like food…

    Anna - February 19, 2015 Reply

    Lamb on a stick = Ewwww….. but the Tibetan dumplings were the business.

    Noodles, all the noodles. Combination Short & Long soup anyone?! 🙂 Asian is my go to feed, dumplings – YES. Pizza & pasta are also excellent, and I love Mexican food too. Haha!

    Think I am with you, I ‘Just like food’. #boom

    PS: What’s for afternoon tea?

Kris Johnston - February 19, 2015 Reply

Hungarian fried bread…. arrrr ma gawd. I need this now. I didn’t know such a thing existed.
My salad for lunch is going to be extra crap today now after reading this weeks addition of shenANNAgans.

Menslink is such a wonderful organisation. Well done you on supporting it.

    Anna - February 19, 2015 Reply

    Fried bread…. I dunno, reckon the BBQd Hungarian sausage was a whole lot tastier. Ha, insert picture of the cat saying – This salad tastes like I’d rather be fat. And yep, Menslink is an awesome organisation, even cooler we get to help out in such a fun way. As always, thanks bro for your support. You ROCK! 🙂

Lizzy (Good Things) - February 19, 2015 Reply

Oh, my favourite event in the Canberra food calendar… and my once a year indulgence in langos! I’ve purposely not made it at home, as my Peter loves it so much, I’m sure he’d ask me to make it regularly.

Lovely round up of your festival bites, Anna… gozleme is another favourite… and those cannoli, yum!

    Anna - February 19, 2015 Reply

    Haha… Your Peter is crazy spoilt with all the amazing foods you make, Liz. Solid plan not making langos at home tho, reckon it is good to keep some things for special occasions only.

Agness - February 19, 2015 Reply

You are always having so much fun, girl!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Anna - February 19, 2015 Reply

    Yeah I do! I make the most of everything I do. 🙂

Mandy - February 19, 2015 Reply

How awesome are you with your fundrasing – awesome stuff Anna.
And International Food on a Stick Day – well that sounds like a scrumptious day.
Have a beautiful day darling. I am off to Mozambique with Pete so out of comms for a while in the next couple of days.
Love to you across the oceans hon.
🙂 Mandy xo

    Anna - February 19, 2015 Reply

    Thanks Mandy, Hannah (the gal in the Menslink picture) and I have a bunch of fun doing the fundraising thing together, it really is just another excuse for us to catch up and hang out. 🙂
    Fantastic, hope you and your Pete have a wonderful time in Mozambique. Looking forward to hearing what you kids get/got up too. Travel safe sweets.
    Hugs and love right back at chya.
    PS: 7 months till I will be hanging in Meerkat land and sipping cups of tea with you. Yay!

hassan - February 18, 2015 Reply

wowww!… participate in an international festival means going to to several countries in tiny place.
happy your day.

    Anna - February 19, 2015 Reply

    It was amazing Hassan! I ‘visited’ and ate foods from about 15 different countries. It was amazing! Such a good way to get my travel on. 🙂

Elizabeth - February 18, 2015 Reply

I’m up for any food festival and that sounds like a great one! Not a fan of a fried sausage 🙁 so I would have been in the long line for that other thing that I only read Cheese and sour cream and I started to drool!
Connoli (she says in a dreamy voice) I think I literally ate Italy out of these when I was there, and have only found one place in Sydney that was anything close…. Nothing on the Goldy yet… but that tis probably a good thing!
Thanks for the good read and laugh as always! Liz xx

    Anna - February 19, 2015 Reply

    That BBQd snag was freakin delicious, but I wouldn’t normally order a fried sausage either. Word is the fried bread was the MOST popular food, followed closely by Tibetan dumplings. Worth all the lining up. 🙂
    Haha… That is awesome, I haven’t eaten one in Italy yet, so cannot compare, but these were amazing.
    Thanks for stopping in Liz, I appreciate your thoughtful comments muchly. xo

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