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Community Cook

BILLEE MCGINLEY WAS captivated by the Top End nearly 20 years ago when she relocated from her hometown of Melbourne.

Darwin quenched her thirst for different experiences, as well as being drawn to the tropical warm climate and opportunities to learn more about Indigenous cultures.

A passionate advocate for our unique landscapes, environment and Indigenous culture, Billee has worked with Indigenous land and sea managers, and been involved in many grass roots sustainability projects, including community gardens.

Billee has been running The Little Gardeners program at Lakeside Drive Community Garden, bringing parents and children together to connect to outside natural spaces and learn about local food. Becoming a mother inspired her to start the group.

“It was after having my daughter Papuana that I prioritised more time in the garden to pass on these important skills of harvesting and eating from a garden. I think it's important that everyone grows up with a connection to their food.”

Fetta and Spinach Buckwheat Pancakes


1.5 cups buckwheat flour

(naturally gluten free)

1 cup milk (I use oat milk)

2 eggs

2 tsp baking powder


Chopped up spinach

(from the garden)

Fetta cheese, crumbled

Lots of nutmeg (I grate

1 whole nutmeg)

Salt and pepper to taste


Mix batter ingredients together. Fry pancakes in oil or butter. I think coconut oil makes them nice and crispy and tastes best. Top with delicious topping and serve!


Words and photos: Emma Lupin

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