CAUTION: Be careful walking beneath these large trees for two reasons. If one of these huge cones landed on you, you could be toast. Secondly, and more often the threat, the fallen leafy stalks are very rigid and sharply pointed. Oh yeah, one more thing, when working to open the fallen fruits, you may want to cover your hands with olive oil, as one would when working with a ripe jackfruit, so that any bunya sap stays off of your skin.
EDIBLE KERNEL: The inner kernel within these seeds (ripe cones) can be eaten raw or cooked. Raw, they taste like a raw peanut to me. I much prefer them roasted in an oven. It has also been described as tasting like a "starchy potato." Fruits are most often gathered from the ground as they crash to the ground when fully ripe. They should be all green. Crack one open and if you see some brown coloration mixed with green, they should be ripe. The first time that I roasted the inner seeds in my oven, some of them exploded. As it turned out, I should have punctured a small hole in the shell of the seed to allow for steam to be expelled. Oops! I once made a vegan kaffir lime (more respectfully known as Makrut) dipping sauce that coupled with the roasted nuts perfectly. I have heard of Australian natives making a bread from the ground kernel paste. Also, some folks boil the kernels, but I have yet to try this. Green Deane also mentions eating them fried, powdered, and that the sprouted nut is edible. They may be chopped and added as a pizza topping.  In Australia, "traditionally, bunya pine seeds were roasted on an open fire and eaten as they were."  Nuts may be frozen.  Some foragers much prefer cooking the nuts in the shell which makes shell removal easier.  Native Tastes of Australia writes, "The nuts can then be roasted, sliced or pureed and used in desserts and savory dishes and spreads. The nuts can also be milled to a flour and then used in various doughs."  "Traditionally the Australian Aboriginal people ate the nuts raw or roasted and they also buried the nuts in mud for some months to improve the flavour. Raw nuts, stored in their shells in the refrigerator in a sealed container for several months, have a much sweeter taste, probably similar to the nuts immersed in mud."  "Nuts were also kept in their shells in wet bags until sprouts formed in about a week. When the sprouts were about 5-10 cm long the sprouted nuts (still in the shells) were boiled for 20-30 minutes then removed from shells and served hot." 
BOILING SEEDS: "When boiled in their shell for 20-30 minutes the texture becomes waxy and can be easily sliced or pureed." 
NUTRITIONAL VALUE: The nuts contain approximately 9% protein.  They are very nutritious much like chestnuts, being stachy, not oily.  They contain: "complex carbohydrates (40%) and fat (2%)." 
BUNYA NUTS IN MODERN TIMES: "Bunya nuts are still sold as a regular food item in grocery stalls and street-side stalls around rural southern Queensland. Some farmers in the Wide Bay/ Sunshine Coast regions have experimented with growing bunya trees commercially for their nuts and timber."  Many Australian foragers post recipes online that include "pancakes, biscuits, and breads, to casseroles, to "bunya nut pesto" or hummus."
NUT TEA: "When the nuts are boiled in water, the water turns red, making a flavoursome tea." 
FERMENTED NUTS: In Australia "the nuts were also stored in the mud of running creeks, and eaten in a fermented state. This was considered a delicacy." 
FRUITING: Fruits usually drop between 17 to 18 months after pollination occurs. Fruits usually drop in the summer in Australia, and I find the same can happen here in Florida, although I would say that the winter is the high point of fruit drop here. Major fruitings occur every two or three to seven years in Australia. Here in Florida, we are slowly learning just when these heavy, irregular fruiting years occur.
SMOKING FOODS: Australia's Slow Food Foundation for Biodiversity writes, "Bunya wood is excellent for smoking meat or fish."  Green Deane tells us that the spent pod cases, after having removed the edible seeds, may be used to smoke foods. 
INDIGENOUS USES: This tree is beyond respected by indigenous tribespeople of Australia and books have been published detailing the interaction of these trees by them. Indigenous Bunya festivals are fascinating and well worth researching. "The Bunya Mountains is considered a very sacred place with similar status to Uluru for the aborigines of S.E. Queensland."  "In what was probably Australia's largest indigenous event, diverse tribes – up to thousands of people – once travelled great distances (from as far as Charleville, Dubbo, Bundaberg and Grafton) to the gatherings. They stayed for months, to celebrate and feast on the bunya nut. The bunya gatherings were an armistice accompanied by much trade exchange, and discussions and negotiations over marriage and regional issues."  "Indigenous groups such as the Wakawaka, Githabul, Kabi Kabi, Jarowair, Goreng Goreng, Butchulla, Quandamooka, Barungam, Yiman, and Wulili have continued cultural and spiritual connections to the Bunya Mountains to this day."  "Clayton Donovan, a Gumbaynggirr and Bundjalung man and respected Indigenous chef, uses bunya nuts in the food he makes at his catering company, Jaaning Tree, as regularly as supply allows. "I'll poach them in saffron-infused liquid, shave them and throw them into salads," he says. "Or I'll grind them up into a meal and make gnocchi and serve it in saffron sauce."  " Many trees were owned by individual families who cut notches on the tree trunks to climb up to 40 metres to collect the pine cones in the crown of the tree. The tribes from the mountains shared the nuts with ocean dwelling tribes who reciprocated by providing seafood when visited by the mountain tribes. These ceremonies ceased with white settlement. Tom Petrie, the son of a free white settler, was the only white person to travel with 100 aborigines from Brisbane to one of these feasts. This is described in “Tom Petrie’s Reminiscences of Early Queensland”, published 1904. Currently Australian Aborigine people are keen to restart the bunya festivals." 
WOOD / TIMBER: This tree has been exploited for its timber in Australia and "most populations are now protected in formal reserves and national parks" in Australia.  Recently, the wood has been used to make guitar soundboards and cabinets. 
SHOOTS: Australian aborigines have reported eaten the shoots. 
BARK: Native Australians used the "tree's bark as kindling." 
RESIN: I have gathered Bunya resin from a tree in Lake Wales where bees have made a large home in a hole in the tree and resin is exuding copiously. I have made a salve, similar to pine salve, with it and it is a wonderful salve.
BUNYA NUT PESTO
(from NATIVE TASTES OF AUSTRALIA)
100 g Bunya Nuts, de-shelled
1 bunch Basil
50 g Parmesan Cheese
1 clove garlic – finely chopped
250 ml Macadamia Nut Oil
2 tspns ground Pepperberry
Gently heat the Pepperberry in 100 ml of the Macadamia Oil.
Finely chop Bunya Nuts and mix nuts with the garlic and 100 ml of the Macadamia Nut Oil.
Roughly chop Basil in a food processor or blender with the 50 ml of the Macadamia Nut Oil.
Process for one minute, and then add the Bunya Nut mix and the Pepperberry mix.
This works best if the oils are poured in a steady stream.
Do not over-process.
This should keep in the refrigerator for a week – if it lasts that long!
This website also has a recipe for STEAMED BUNYA NUT PUDDING
. CLICK HERE
NATIVE TO: "Southeast Queensland, Australia and two small disjunct populations in northeastern Queensland's World Heritage listed Wet Tropics (where the populations are "rare and restricted")." 
FORMER RANGE: Wikipedia states: "Historically, trees were found in populations recorded as abundant and widespread in suitable habitats of Southeast Queensland and Wide Bay-Burnett (regions). In these regions of Queensland the natural ecosystems growing Bunya Pines have sustained European agricultural occupation. At the start of European occupation, A. bidwillii occurred in great abundance in southern Queensland, to the extent that a Bunya Bunya Reserve was declared in 1840 to protect its habitat. The tree once grew as large groves or sprinkled regularly as an emergent species throughout other forest types on the Upper Stanley and Brisbane Rivers, Sunshine Coast hinterland (especially the Blackall Range near Montville and Meleny), and also towards and on the Bunya Mountains. Today, the species is usually encountered as very small groves or single trees in its former range, except on and near the Bunya Mountains, where it is still fairly prolific."  This species "has a limited distribution within Australia in part because of the drying out of Australia with loss of rainforest and poor seed dispersal." 
MODERN DAY EVENTS: "In 2002 a Bunya Symposium was held at Griffith University" in Australia. 
ETYMOLOGY: "The scientific name honours the botanist John Carne Bidwill, who came across it in 1842 and sent the first specimens to Sir Walter Hooker in the following year." 
DESCRIPTION: A large evergreen coniferous tree. Top-heavily, egg-shaped, "dome-at-the-top" tree. Gangly. Often with spanish moss hanging from the branches.
LONGEVITY: Trees live for "about 500"  to "600 years." 
HEIGHT / TALLEST TREES: It is not unusual for them to attain a height of over 100' tall when planted in parts of Ausdtralia. Florida's champion tree is located at Selby Gardens in Sarasota. The tallest Bunya known on the planet is 169' tall in the Bunya Mountains National Park, Queensland. (The largest one here at Bamboo Grove that I planted is almost ten feet tall now.)
LEAVES: Extremely sharp and abundant, diamond-shaped, tapering at both ends, glossy green. Leafy stems usually liter the ground beneath. See caution above.
FRUIT: These massive fruits may reach 14" in diameter and weigh up to 20+ pounds each! Individual seeds within the fruits usually grow to one and a half inches long. Fruiting may begin at between 15-40 years.  Australia's Slow Food Foundation for Biodiversity tell us that crops may begin after 12-15 years.  However, it may take 100 years for a decent fruiting to occur in some trees. 
PROPAGATION FROM SEED: I love sprouting the seeds and distributing seedlings and because of this I have a hard time consuming them when I think of how potentially large a tree the seed may grow into. This species' cryptogeal seed germination makes germination a challenge. I am only now seeing seedlings pop up in mulched beds that I placed seeds in two to three years ago. The thing with these seedlings that we should know is the fact that the seed makes a tuber in the ground and only then does a shoot sprout skyward and this all takes time. So, big deal, they may take forty years to fruit. You are usually planting them for the next generation. Have faith, the propagation of these beauties are not for the short-sighted.
RELATED SPECIES: Most folks that I talk with that have them growing in their yards identify them incorrectly as MONKEY PUZZLE trees, Araucaria araucana, which are native to Chile and Argentina, and have smaller fruits which look like green pin cushions to me. You can see the difference by looking at the leaves. Monkey Puzzles have triangular-shaped leaves while Bunyas have more diamond-shaped leaves which taper at both ends. I have only found two true Monkey Puzzles in all of my searching so far in Florida. Don't even get me started on the amazing PARANA PINE, Araucaria angustifolia, from southern Brazil, which is a super rare find in Florida. It also produces super-delicious seeds here in Florida. There are some nice fruiting Parana Pines in the Tallahassee area and a youngen at Leu Gardens in Orlando. The most commonly planted Araucaria across Florida is the NORFOLK ISLAND PINE, Araucaria heterophylla.
Ease of growth
 sbs.com.au (Article: These Giant Bunya Nuts Are A Key Indigenous Food As Well As Snacks For Dinosaurs.")
 Slow Food Foundation for Biodiversity (fondazioneslowfood.com)